Tuesday 13th - Thursday 15th June 2023

Tag: UN


Nigerians imported over N18tn worth of meat, cooking oil and more over a seven year period

Nigerians imported not less than nine items worth N18.12tn from the forex ban list of the Central Bank of Nigeria between 2016 and 2022, findings by The PUNCH have shown.

The CBN had categorized about 41 import items as not valid for forex, which means that the importer will not be able to get forex from the apex bank for such items.

The apex bank said the restriction was part of efforts to sustain the stability of the foreign exchange market, ensure effective utilisation of foreign exchange and the derivation of optimum benefit from goods and services imported into the country.

However, these items were not banned or prohibited by the Nigerian Customs Service, so they can still be imported.

According to an analysis of Nigerian Foreign Trade reports of the National Bureau of Statistics from 2016 to 2022, items such as crude palm oil, vegetable products, animal products, meat, vegetable fats and oil, steel products, rubber, plastic, clothes, and textiles were imported from various countries.

Source: Punch, April 2023

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Tingo Foods commission new plant build

A new plant build has been announced by the Agri-food company Tingo Foods, (a subsidiary of Tingo International Holding Group)  it is expected to take between a year and a half to two years. The facility will start by producing rice, tea, coffee, chocolate, biscuits, edible oil, cashew milk, millet-based cereal, beer, mineral water, fizzy drinks, pasta and noodles. It will also become a development facility for new products for local and export markets. The facility will help Africa from paying foreign exchange on imported products, by creating more made in Africa food to the world. They aim to enhance trade throughout African nations also through the Africa Continental Free Agreement by creating and selling high quality products from Nigeria.

The company founder, Dozy Mmobuosi, said that its the first step they are making in a multi-billion-dollar investment plan by Tingo International Holdings to work in the African Food industry.

Recently, the African food industry has suffered from a lack of productivity and poor usage of human capital. They aim to change this by creating 12000 jobs, giving a massive economic boost, and aiding the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals. The goals are to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure peace and prosperity for all. In Nigeria, the agribusiness industry accounts for about 65% of manufacturing sector revenue and contributes 7% to GDP according to USDA data. 

The 2022 Annual Trends and Outlook Report authors said that Africa must change from exporting raw products and importing finished ones, to the other way around if they want to become a competitor in the agro-processing sectors that the African Union’s Agenda 2063 targets have labelled under economic growth, wealth generation and employment. The report states it as “much-untapped potential” for an attractive urban market for processed products. Compared to the previously reported 63% of traded agricultural products from 2003-2005, the new estimate is 72%.

The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) showed the largest share of processed and semi-processed intra-African exports in 2018–2020, as well as the largest increase in the share of processed exports between the two periods.

Source: Food Business Africa, February 2023

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Jumia Food and American giant, Domino’s join together in Nigeria

Africa’s biggest eCommerce and logistics company, Jumia have partnered with international giant, Domino’s Pizza through its food and grocery outlet Jumia Food. 

Jumia Food’s CEO, Massimiliano Spalazzi, has advised that the new partnership will give the company access to more customers across Nigeria, utilising Domino’s portfolio, making it easier to order meals directly to their door in a short time. 

He added:” “We are delighted to provide our online platform where consumers in Nigeria can order their favourite pizza delight from Domino’s Pizza outlets available at the click of a button on Jumia Food. We have spent a decade in Nigeria, and since our inception, we have continuously strived to impact the lives of millions of consumers through innovation and technology.”

Also speaking, the Group Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Eat’N’Go Africa, Mr Patrick McMichael said Domino’s Pizza Nigeria is delighted to expand its offerings to its esteemed customers in Nigeria through listing on Jumia. 

“As we grow and expand, it is important to employ digital technology in ensuring that we continue to maintain exceptional service delivery which is what this partnership avails Domino’s Pizza,” he said. 

The joining of companies gives Jumia Food an avenue and the means to reach far further with their clientele.

Source: Food Business Africa, December 2022

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Sugar Sector Booming

Nigeria’s sugar sub-sector received investments totalling over US $3 billion in the last decade after the “Nigeria Sugar Master Plan” was implemented.

Mr Zacch Adedeji, the executive secretary of the NSDC (National Sugar Development Council) has said that there has been five investors that directly signed into the backward integration programme aspect of the plan. The five companies in question being; Dangote Sugar Refinery, BUA Sugar Refinery, Golden Sugar Refinery, KIA Africa Group and the latest being Saro Africa Group. Mr Adedeji spoke at the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between Saro Africa Group and the Nasarawa State government for a sugar project to be domiciled in Doma and Nasarawa Council of the state, saying that the sector had created thousands of jobs through the BIP Operators.

The Saro Africa Group operates in a number of industries including agriculture, engineering and real estate.

The project is said to sit on 15,000 hectares of land for the first phase with other phases to follow.

The NSMP has four main goals; for Nigeria to become self-sufficient for sugar production, stem the flow of sugar importation, create jobs for Nigerians, and to generate electricity and ethanol for industrial needs.

Aliko Dangote, the President of the Dangote Group announced the the Dangote Sugar Refinery PLC is massively upscaling their sugar sub-sector investment to coincide with the Nigeria Sugar Master Plan. He has said that the company is investing in Adamawa State through the expansion of DSR Numan sugar, from 3,000 tonnes, to 6,000 tonnes, to 9,800 to 15,000 tonnes of cane per day. With the increase of refining sugar cane will also have to increase production capacity so they will be expanding the plantation from 8,700 hectares to 24,200 hectares in the next 7 years.

Source: Food Business Africa, December 2022

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$100,000 prize for food sector Innovators

The Nigeria Prize for Science 2022 has been won by Local innovations on ensuring food security in the country.

The Nigeria LNG Limited (NLNG) created the award as a liquefied natural gas (LNG)-producing company and a liquefied natural gas plant in Bonny Island, Rivers State.

The prize for science is for scientists the world over, who find answers to “Nigerian” problems, is how it has been advertised by the advisory board.

The winners were announced by Professor Barth Nnaji (engineer, former Minister of Power, one of the E-Design concept inventors) at a press conference in Lagos, stating that the two most outstanding works on “Gains in Grain Yield of Released Maize (Zea Mays L.) Cultivators under Drought and Well-Watered Conditions” by Muhydideen Oyekunle and Shehu Ado, and “Development of Process Plant for Plantain Flour” by Sesan Peter Ayodeji and Emmanuel Olatunji Olatomilola. They won the $100,000 between them.

The winners were a Maize Breeder and lecturer at the Institute for Agricultural Research at Ahmadu Bello University and his colleague, Prof. Shehu Garki Ado, an agricultural expert and  professor of Genetics and Plant Breeding, is also currently the vice chancellor of Al-Qalam University, Katsina.

The other winners were Sesan Peter Ayodeji is a professor of Machine & Process Design and Applied Ergonomics at the Federal University of Technology, Akure and his colleague is Emmanuel Olatunji Olatomilola.

“At the global level, Goal 2 of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) seeks sustainable solutions to end hunger in all its forms by 2030 and to achieve food security. This entails improving the productivity and incomes of small-scale farmers by promoting equal access to land, technology and markets, resilient agricultural practices and sustainable food production systems,” Nnaji stated that the works address the need for food security which is on Nigeria’s National agenda. He said the judges decision reflects a lot of the 2022 theme.

“The maize seeds they selected courtesy of breeding programme have been tested to be high yielding and water stress tolerant. The hybrids they selected record yields of 1.73-2.51 t/ha in stress areas and 5-6 t/ha in areas with good rainfall distribution in farmers’ fields,” Nnaji thinks the work by Muhyideen Oyekunle and Shehu Ado’s on “Gains in Grain Yield of Released Maize (Zea Mays L.) Cultivars under Drought and Well Watered Conditions” provides the country with opportunity.

Nnaji said Susan Peter Ayodeji and Emmanuel Olatunji Olatomilola’s work on “Development of Process Plant for Plantain Flour” will help for reducing spoilage and the distribution of the packaging of farm products.

Source: The Guardian, September 2022

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New Agricultural Institutes unveiled

President Muhammadu Buhari approved to establish 6 different institutes, one for each geopolitical zone,  for areas of agricultural machinery and equipment development across Nigeria. The aim is to reduce import and in turn conserve foreign exchange.

The opening statement from Executive Vice Chairman/Chief Executive Officer of the National Agency for Science and Engineering Infrastructure (NASENI), Prof. Mohammed Sani Haruna, was this: “It is a case of a promise kept by the President Buhari administration, as the establishment of the agric machinery institute, Lafia targets the provision of 10 million jobs for unemployed Nigerian youths through economic diversification, especially exploring the gains of agriculture in nation building.”

Gambari stated that AMEDI (Agricultural Machinery and Equipment Development Institute) shows the federal government is committed to developing technology in the economy and that it was one of the key elements of public issue with the financial system.

There will be a pilot farm showcasing modernised technique, technologies and extension services for the agricultural sector throughout the nation.

Ibrahim Gambari spoke through the special assistant to the President Foreign and International Affairs: “Today, we are here to kick off another flagship project with the establishment of AMEDI, Lafia, building on the remarkable success of the other NASENI development institutes across the country. We are confident that AMEDI, Lafia will serve as the cradle for nurturing professional engineers and scientists with proficiency in the design and manufacturing of diverse agricultural machinery and equipment. I am sure that AMEDI will in no time emerge as a centre of excellence in agricultural machinery and equipment design to enable Nigeria to scale new heights as the paradise for agricultural produce and a hub for agro-allied technologies.”

He praised Governer Abdullahi Sule saying it was taking the bull by the horns and that Professor Haruna did well for getting the project into existence.

Gambari expressed the need for support from AMEDI and NASENI once the project is in full swing.

“The Presidency will constantly provide the needed support for AMEDI and NASENI in developing new products to promote a diversified economy for our beloved nation.

“Home-initiated and home-sustained industrialisation is key to achieving a sustainable economic recovery for Nigeria because technology is the secret behind the Asian, European and American magic,” he added.

Source: The Guardian, August 2022

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Oyetty Meals launches as West African food company in UK

The founders of Sami’s Online, the Afro-Carribean online store, have launched Oyetty Meals, a new West African ready meal brand.

The couple found a gap in the market for African cuisine and wanted to fill it. All the ready meals are made with an emphasis on making them authentic, healthy and like home-cooked African meals. They are using organically grown ingredients, with the majority sourced from West Africa.

The different meals available are Afang Soup, Asun, Bitterleaf Soup, Efo Riro, Egusi Soup, Ewa Agoyin, Nkwobi and Smokey Jollof.

“We are delighted to be bringing Oyetty Meals to the market,” comments Olusegun Akande who founded the business with his wife Oyetola Isola (pictured). “COVID had a huge impact on our business, meaning we had to pivot, and fortunately the online side of the business really took off in 2020. The success meant we could invest money back into the business and offer convenience meals as another option. After two years in the making, we are delighted to be able to offer our meals, which are cooked with care and flare by our expert chefs to our longstanding customers. They have been crafted to balance nutrition, taste and most importantly the Nigerian authentic flavour.”

“We love good food, and we believe a good diet contributes to good health and a happier life,” says Isola. “We want everyone one to be able to enjoy tasty authentic Nigerian dishes without the fuss of sourcing ingredients, scanning recipes and most especially finding the time to cook it.”

The meals are classically microwaveable in around 3 minutes, and frozen from fresh to retain nutrition and flavour.

On top of the new business venture, the pair have launched the Oyetty Foundation, which provides 5% of sales from Oyetty Meals to provide for support, help and information to Nigerian families with children having additional and/or special needs.

Source: Natural Products, July 2022

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Food and Beverage West Africa 2022 a massive hit

As the event wound down, exhibitors from five continents looked back at the past few days in Lagos at the fourth Food and Beverage West Africa Exhibition in Lagos, Nigeria. They counted themselves privileged to be part of the 200 exhibiting firms to showcase their products in the Nigerian market.

Managing Director from BtoB Events (the organisers of the show) Jamie Hill, exclaimed that he was impressed by the number of companies that showcased. It meant the Nigerian people had opportunity to make partnerships and deals with prominent brands from their industry.

 “When it comes to big business for the Food and Beverage West Africa Exhibition in the sub-Saharan Africa region, which is the largest food and beverage trade exhibition, the right place to be is Nigeria.

“We are humbled and honoured to host the fourth edition here again. We have over 200 exhibitors from across 40 to 50 countries, spanning five continents.

“I will like to say how impressive I am with the local exhibitors here from Nigeria. We want to do everything we can to support our local businesses. We want them to come and flex muscles with the big players across the world.”

“Hopefully, we expect them to grow their businesses and begin to also export to other countries. This, really, would drive the Nigerian economy in the post-pandemic era.”

Sharmeen Foods, a leading Pakistani exporter of Dates exhibited and their Deputy Manager, Key Accounts (Export), Syed Ziyad Hussaini, submitted: “In this year’s show, we had a wide range of products from pitted to chopped and organic pitted dates, in addition to fruit bar and dairy biscuits etcetera.

“This is the first time we are here in Nigeria, and we are very happy with the hospitality and everything we have enjoyed since our arrival in the country.

“We are impressed with the turnout and very comfortable with the services offered us. I must say that the organisers have done a very good job, and I really wish them good luck in the next edition, as we look forward to coming back.”

Source: The Guardian, June 2022

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UN believe West African food economy will hit $480bn by 2030

Matthias Schmale, the UN’s Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator in Nigeria has stated that the West African and Sahel sub-regions food economy is projected to hit $480 billion in 2030.

At the 13th Multidisciplinary Team Meeting of 15 West African countries and Sahel sub-region held in Abuja, where they were brainstorming the way forward for the food and nutrition situation in the region Schmale announced this. The meetings theme being “Joining Efforts to Build Resilient Agrifood Systems in West Africa and Sahel”.

The FAO (Food and Agriculture Organisation) of UN is where the growth will be attributed to, by their systemic approach undertaken in maintaining the development in the fight against hunger, poverty and progressing to deliver other Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The challenges being faced by West Africa’s agri-food sources are a declining natural resource base, recurrent natural and human-caused disasters, climate change, and rising insecurity.

By appealing to West African countries to seize the opportunity to build resilient systems throughout the region and align with the FAO’s framework to address structural policy constraints, he’s noted these significant trends will provide the prospects of production increase, value increase, create jobs and food security in turn.

FAO representative in Nigeria and to the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), Fred Kafeero, said FAO emphasised on the area of data and analytics for the generation of evidence to guide responsible investments and partnerships for food systems transformation.

“We are glad our partners from ECOWAS are joining us to advance food security and nutrition in West Africa and to contribute to knowledge sharing regarding challenges, threats, and opportunities to move agri-food systems in the region towards sustainability.

Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development (FMARD) Dr Mohammad Mahmood Abubakar assured of government willingness to partner with FAO and other development partners in driving for a resilient agrifood system in the country in particular and in West Africa and Sahel in general.

The News Agency of Nigeria(NAN) reports that the three days meeting expected over 200 delegates from the ECOWAS member states including senior officials, ministers and commissioners of agriculture, FAO staff, regional technical organisations, Civil Society among others to participate.

Source: The Guardian, March 2022

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