Lagos State Government has unfolded various agricultural projects that will ensure and sustain the food security situation in its communities.
The State Commissioner for Agriculture, Prince Gbolahan Lawal disclosed this on Thursday while rendering the account of activities of his Ministry to commemorate the first year anniversary of the Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu’s administration, noting that these agricultural projects would ultimately shore up the food security status of the State from its current 18% to 40%.
Lawal said some of the projects were the Songhai Project, now Avia Food Production Centre; the Araga Food Production Centre; the establishment of one ton per hour Fish Feed Mill (Extruder System); and the establishment of the Wholesale Produce Market.
He listed others as the establishment of Strategic Food Reserve, completion and commissioning of the 32-Metric Tons Per Hour Rice Mill at Imota; the optimal utilisation of the Farm Settlements and Estates in the State; empowerment of Lagos Agriprenurship Programme (LAP) graduands as well as the establishment of 160 hectares feedlot at Imota, Epe.
The commissioner said the present situation of food security in the State had been impacted by the lessons learnt from the Coronavirus pandemic.
He stated that the government would formulate policies to foster sustainability.
“This calls for deliberate effort and policy formulation on the part of Government in order to prepare for future events that may want to test the food reserve and supply system of the State. The Ministry has, therefore, embarked on some of these projects in the course of the year to shore up the food security status of the State,” Lawal averred.
The Commissioner explained that these deliberate efforts and policy formulation by the present administration would guide against situations that might affect food security or threaten the food reserve and supply system of the State.
He pointed out that the projects would increase agricultural production to meet the food needs of the State’s growing population, transform agriculture to commercial and export-oriented production by essentially focusing on boosting local food production and generate employment, especially for the youths.
Lawal also envisaged that these projects would provide training facilities for agriprenuers, youths, women and students in agricultural schemes; promote efficient distribution systems for agricultural produce through wholesale, retail and distribution channels; provide good storage facilities for a purposeful food reserve in the State as well as generate more revenue for the State Government.
He gave an assurance that the State Government would not rest on its oars but would rather continue to intensify efforts in the agricultural space, especially where the State has comparative ecological and socio-economic advantages.