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Expert applaud Lagos food security efforts

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By Usman Oladimeji

Lagos structure and operational would guarantee long-term sustainability.

Mr. Mogaji, an expert in Agriculture and a Farmer in Africa, has applauded the Lagos State Government for its forward-thinking approach to developing the state’s agricultural Infrastructure. The state government’s implemented development plan includes, the Construction of the Imota Rice Mill in Ikorodu and the establishment of the Food Hub in and around Epe among others. Mogaji said this during a TVC News Breakfast show on Food Security in Lagos State on Friday morning. Clearly, the state government has proved its unwavering commitment to the Federal Government’s food production program.

He said that Food Security in the state was a major priority during Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu’s first four years in office. Mogaji, commenting on the state’s execution of a specific project, said that the Lagos State Government’s structure and operational relations with the Mill and similar projects would guarantee their long-term profitability and Sustainability. As an expert in Agriculture and Food Security, he claimed that the initiatives the Lagos State Government took would lead to more food availability and a significant decrease in food price Inflation.

Farmers have seen a decrease of 60 percent in post-harvest losses.

Moreover, he urged Lagosians and all Nigerians to leverage the opportunities provided by the Sanwo-Olu government. Hidden hunger, which he defined as the availability of nutritious options among the many food categories in our nation, was also a topic he discussed. With the introduction of new food varieties in Lagos during the last four years, he said, farmers in the state and Nigeria generally have seen a decrease in Post-Harvest Losses of around 60 percent.

The agricultural expert highlighted some of the projects spearheaded by him and some other experts, such as the cultivation of the Sweet Corn variety of Corn commonly consumed in the Western World, which was initially rejected by many when the move for its cultivation started four years ago but is now on the shelves of most supermarkets in the country. He acknowledged that the government’s supportive policies had ensured this and similar events are anticipated.

State gov’t had established mechanisms to guarantee adequate food supply.

Conversing of the Imota Rice Mill, Mogaji boasted that it could quickly generate over a million bags of rice if it operated for 16 hours a day, putting the state on the path to easily overcoming hunger, hardship, and deprivation. The Imota, Ikorodu integrated rice mill is a 2 by 16 Metric Tonnes per hour facility spread over an 8.5hectare land area that requires more than 240,000MT of paddy annually in order to manufacture 2.5 million bags of 50kg rice. With its completion, the mill can meet the demand for rice among a sizable segment of Lagos’s population.

Thus, he encourages the Lagos State Government, the Agricultural Sector, and the agricultural and food production community to place more significant emphasis on guaranteeing increased food production via the efficient operation of the Imota Rice Mill, Cold storage for perishable items in markets throughout the State, and other efforts already in place. The agriculturist affirmed that the state government had established mechanisms to guarantee adequate food supply in Lagos and around the nation. He also spoke highly of the State Agriculture Ministry, hailing its leadership for blending private and Public Sector expertise.

Lagos’s production advantages would help mitigate price increases.

While acknowledging that the Poultry industry faces enormous problems, he noted that Lagos production advantages would help mitigate price Inflation brought on by COVID-19 and other factors (such as a potential shift in the federal policy) linked to the industry. He recommended that the Lagos State Government increase its already impressive efforts to improve the state’s Poultry industry. Ultimately, he stated that the government is shifting its attention to the state’s comparative advantage in vegetable production in the hopes of making Lagos a global centre for the industry.

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