President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan has called on Nigerians to join hands with the government to unlock the economic potentials of the nation by embracing locally produced products and stated that his administration is irrevocably committed to the development of cassava market which he hopes would help in reducing food importation into the country.
The President stated this at the formal presentation of the commercialised cassava composite bread at the State House, Abuja.
” Let us join hands to unlock the economic potentials of the nation, moderate our exotic taste and embrace our products”,he stated.
President Jonathan said government was at the verge of revitalizing its rural economy by moving towards food manufacturing and cassava use in the country which he said would produce over 1.3m jobs in the next four years.
He disclosed that measures were on towards facilitating the manufacturing of large scale cassava plants across the country capable of producing over 1.3 metric tons of cassava flour.
The President commended UTC, Food Concepts and Cassava Growers Association for supporting and embracing the initiative stating that government will continue to encourage local production in the country.
In his remarks, Minister of Agriculture, Dr Adewunmi Adesina said the ministry is working with the bakery industry to enable them expand their operations and assured that the goal of the cassava bread initiative was to make it a “national
bread, produced and sold across this nation.”
He said Nigeria will save 250 billion naira foreign exchange from reduced import of wheat and wheat flour stating that rather than enrich foreign farmers, Nigerian farmers’ and processors’ income would be raised.
Managing Director, UTC Nig. Plc, Folusho Olaniyan said the company has achieved a sustainable commercial recipe for its white bread and wheat bread with 20 per cent high quality cassava flour inclusion.
She said the initial risk undertaken by the company in the venture has paid off and promised that the company will stay ahead of the competition being currently the single highest consumer of high quality cassava flour in the baking industry.