Lagos empowers 500 rice farmers
The Lagos State Ministry of Agriculture, says it has trained and empowered 500 rice farmers across the state.
Speaking during the empowerment and training programme, the Special Adviser to the Governor on Agriculture, Dr. Oluwarotimi Fashola, said the programme is designed to improve rice paddy, in order to add value to rice production to improve its nutritional values.
“This training will bring about standardised farming techniques, set good quality for rice production, which can compete with international value.”
Fashola stated that the state’s economy has a great advantage with the high population dynamics on people’s consumption of rice imported into the country, which is reduced with the improvement of the quality of the local rice production in the state.
“The state government has invested to develop agriculture production of the rice value chain. In 2008 and 2015, over 1,000 youths were trained and empowered to enact the modern agricultural rice farming techniques process.
“The training process, which features principally production, processing and packaging of Eko Ofada Rice and Eko Rice has led to the establishment of the first Integrated Rice Mill in South West at Imota, with a production capacity of about 12,000 tons yearly,” the Special Adviser said.
According to him, the state government has also initiated partnerships with the Northern state governments on rice farming production and employment opportunities with revenue generation for them.
This, therefore, calls for huge investment in paddy aggregation, rice production technology, extension services, land opening and mechanisation of the production processes.
He, however, assured that by December, the Imota Rice mill would commence production.
Also speaking, the Commissioner for Agriculture, Ms. Abisola Olusanya, implored the beneficiaries to ensure they put into practice all knowledge impacted in them during the training.
She said though the empowerment is still not enough to go around all the rice farmers, it will do a lot to assist the farmers on their various farms.
Olusanya said the knapsack sprayer; fertiliser and Faro 44 rice seedlings they were given will assist them to a large extent if they follow all they have learnt at the training, adding that the state government is ready to buy their paddy from them.
The Chairman of, the House Committee on Agriculture, Kehinde Joseph, implored the beneficiaries never to let the state government down, but to ensure they perform beyond expectations by setting the international standard in their farming engagements.