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“Niger State Set to Explore Shea Butter Production to the Fullest” – Hajiya Yar’adua

By Fodio Ahmed
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The Niger State Commissioner of Investment, Commerce and Industry, Hajiya Rahmatu Mohammed Yar’adua has disclosed the readiness of Niger State Government to explore shea butter production to the fullest in the state.

Hajiya Yar’adua made the disclosure at the participation of Niger State delegation at the shea-butter development training organized by the American Shea-Butter Institute, an internationally recognized firm in innovation and advancement of Shea Tree based in Atlanta, Georgia, United State of America.

The training which was held in December, 2016 and was facilitated by a consultant following the issuance of a letter of intent to the First Heritage Consultants. The commissioner noted that “the training has exposed the Niger State delegation and the State at large to global best practices in the development of shea butter industry and ways to penetrate the international market”.

Yar’adua spoke further that, the President of American Shea Butter Institute, Dr. Samuel Hunter had confirmed that, the Niger State Shea Butter consultant is collaborating with them to map out strategies to fully develop the shea butter industry in Niger State with a target and view to holistically improve and increase the value of the product in the state from $2 to $1000.

The commissioner mentioned that, the immediate benefits of the proposed action plan towards exploring the full potentials of shea-nut in the state include but not limited to ;

1. Training and equipping of the designated participants to show efficiency of the training curriculum and quality control protocols developed in the road map

2. Evaluation of the regulatory framework for establishing a certification centre in Niger state for shea products

3. Training on the requirements to build a certification center (ISO 17065, EU and NOP regulations)

4. Regulatory, technical diagnosis and recommendations for building the certification center

5. Training of designated candidates to assist local women involved in shea fruit harvesting to comply with the certification center of (ISO 17065, EU and NOP fair trade, organic farm products and organic cosmetics certification

6. Enumeration of trees in Niger State, production and verification of other relevant data for shea products

7. Review of existing legal framework for the implementation of environmental protection plan for shea trees, exploitation control for shea fruits, nuts and derivatives as well as draft necessary amendments and/or new laws for an effective legal framework.

The high powered delegation according to Hajiya Yar’adua were presented with an award in recognition of the intensive, continuous effort and political will of the Niger State Government under the service-driven leadership of Alhaji Abubakar Sani Bello towards improving the quality and quantity of shea tree products exported from the State.

Nigerlites recall, sometime in 2016, Hajiya Rahmatu Mohammed Yar’adua paid a courtesy call visit to the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Hon. Dr. Okechukwu E. Enelamah in Abuja where she stated that, Niger State produces 60% worldwide of shea-nuts which if properly utilized, will go a long way in not only catapulting the Internally Generated Revenue of the State and country at large but will also create job opportunities’, compliment the efforts of the President Muhammadu and Gvernor Abubakar Sani Bello’s desire of economic diversification, poverty eradication and most importantly women empowerment in rural areas.