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Nigeria’s food system weak, vulnerable to shock -FG

Tuesday, August 24, 2021


The food system in Nigeria is weak and vulnerable to shock, the Federal Government has said.

Minister of State for Agriculture and Rural Development, Mustapha Shehuri, disclosed this while speaking at the Feed Nigeria Summit 2021 in Abuja on Monday.

At the summit, which had the presence of the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Sabo Nanono, as well as local and international government officials, Shehuri stated that the agriculture ministry was re-examining the weak link.

Shehuri, who spoke through the Director, Federal Department of Agriculture, Karima Babaginda, said, “There is no doubt that the current Nigeria food system is weak and vulnerable to shock.

“The summit, no doubt will assist the ministry to re-examine the weak link with a view to strengthen it for an agricultural system that will work for Nigeria and stabilise the country’s food security.”

He said the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development was determined to create a functional food system that would guarantee all citizen an unrestricted access to quality and safe food.

Shehuri said the FMARD was carrying out intervention programmes in areas of agricultural livelihood and support, food safety and provision of infrastructure in different ecological areas in order to strengthen the weak food system in Nigeria.

He noted that several empirical reports and findings had indicated that per capital production of cereals, root and tuber crops were on the increase in Nigeria.

“However its sustainability to support the exponential growth in population requires extreme intervention from all major stakeholders,” the minister stated.

He added, “For a sustainable food system, we must rise to overcome challenge of poor quality food supplies, hunger, malnutrition and improper food habit of promoting food wastage. Indeed the food consumption pattern must change to reduce food waste.”

On his part, Nanono confirmed the position of Shehuri, but expressed optimism that the country would address this weakness, as he noted that the government was working hard to halt the importation of sugar in Nigeria in two years.

“It is important to note at this point that our food systems architecture remains weak and vulnerable to shocks. We are, however, committed to continue to work to support key value chain activities,” Nanono stated.

The minister said the value chain activities include input distribution, farm production, processing, distribution and marketing, adding that this would be done by providing better coordination and infrastructural support.

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