Uyo - The Federal government’s plan to set up a cassava processing plant in Akwa Ibom has attracted commendation from farmers in the state.
Mrs Uduak Archibong, who was among some prominent farmers who had reacted to the development, told newsmen in Uyo that the move was a “welcome development” and “very essential”.
Archibong said:“If actually established, the industry will encourage more farmers to go into the production of more cassava in the state both for local consumption and for export.”
She said that apart from creating job opportunities for some people, the cassava plant would check “undeserved waste” of the produce.
It will be recalled that the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Dr. Akinwunmi Adesina, had made known the Federal Government’s plan to establish a cassava processing plant in the state.
Adesina, who, disclosed this during a courtesy call on Gov. Godswill Akpabio recently in Uyo, stated that the proposed industry would have the capacity to produce about 7,000 tonnes of cassava products.
He commended the state government for supporting Federal Government’s efforts on fertiliser distribution to farmers, saying that there were expectations that Nigeria would soon become a food exporter, considering the volume of investments in the agricultural sector.
The minister observed that the provision of funds to women in the Women Agricultural Development Empowerment Programme (WADEP) had raised the level of food production.
He gave an assurance that the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development would continue to remain partners with the state in food production.
Akpabio had thanked the minister for considering Akwa Ibom for the project and expressed the hope that it would impact positively on the lives of many people in the state.
The governor expressed happiness that the Ibom International Airport had been chosen for perishable goods exports, saying that the state was ready to engage in several efforts towards raising the standard of agriculture.