Nigerian task force to 'rejuvenate' rice and wheat production

9 June 2016

The Nigerian government has set up a task force to rejuvenate the rice and wheat supply chain.

The government said the National Rice and Wheat Task Force would determine deficiencies in the value chain and recommend solutions to deal with them.

It will set up production targets for rice and wheat in participating states, determine the scope of government support needed to reach the targets and consider the best offtake and marketing to encourage maximum effort among farmers.

The government also said it wants to mobilise farmers and millers in identified target states to engage with the Central Bank of Nigeria’s Anchor Borrowers’ Programme and other available financial support facilities.

“What we are trying to achieve is that agriculture is our main stay and we are trying to evolve a strategy for our economy, a strategy for employment and a strategy for feeding our people,” vice president Yemi Osinbajo said at the inauguration of the task force at the Presidential Villa in Abuja.

Osinbajo said the need to feed the population was the focus of the Buhari administration. “Rice and wheat is our main focus, and making sure that in one year we can show the world that we are serious,” he said.

Task force chairman and governor of Kebbi State, Alhaji Atiku Bagudu, said the disconnect between farmers and millers needed to be addressed to maximise results.

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