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FG Commends Notore's Support to Green Revolution for Food Production

By The Citizen
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The Federal Ministry of Agriculture has commended Notore Chemical Industries Limited's support to green revolution programme for food production in the country noting that food security is now a matter of national security.

In a statement Notore said the Minister of Agriculture, Dr. AkinwunmiAdesina explained that Nigeria must learn from Asian countries by tapping into all resources of its farmers across the nation and delivering a green revolution that will make Nigeria self-sufficient in food production.

'We must turn Nigeria into a bread basket a power house for food production. To do so, we must make a fundamental paradigm shift. Agriculture is a business, not a development programme. It must be structured, developed, resourced and financed as a business,' he said.

Notore said one sure way to achieve the minister's food self-sufficiency goal is the astronomical increase in farm output that comes with the adequate use of fertiliser and this is where Notore Chemical Limited, the only company that manufactures fertiliser in Africa, south of the Sahara including South Africa could easily pass as the most thoughtful investment in Nigeria in the past decade and half.

'Farm output in Nigeria could easily be 20 times of what it currently is if fertiliser is accessible to farmers in Nigeria every time and anytime. But being one of the commodities around which much corruption thrived, it had been a near impossibility for real farmers to get fertiliser without first going through portfolio farmers and politicians.

All these non-farming fertiliser merchants were interested in was the massive government subsidy that accompanied the commodity, which of course, never got to actual farmers in the far-flung rural communities where most of them lived and farmed,' Notore added.

'Thankfully, the story today is different because all a farmer needs to have now is as little as N120.00 and he would have a 1kg packaged Notorefertiliser for his nutrient-hungry crops. As it stands now, the only people that qualify for any form of subsidy are those who have invested in the local production of this desperately need commodity because they can easily transfer the subsidy to farmers with cheaper fertiliser prices,' Notore stressed.

Forbes once wrote of the Notore ingenious investment, saying: 'From time to time, we will write mini-profiles of outstanding African companies, which are constantly providing audacious and innovative solutions to some of the continent's most daunting challenges.

'Today, we profile Notore Chemical Industries, a pioneering Nigerian Fertiliser Company that is boosting Africa's farm yields and working assiduously towards accelerating the continent's green revolution. If African agricultural yields could be raised to European levels, it would be possible for the continent to provide at least 50 per cent more food than it currently does. But it takes fertiliser to make this happen. Currently, Notore Chemical Industries, a $400 million (revenues) Nigerian company is the only producer of urea fertiliser in sub-Saharan Africa, including South Africa.

'Urea is a by-product of the oil and gas industry, which alongside agriculture, is Nigeria's other major industry. By making fertiliser more accessible to farmers through its supply chain and pricing, Notore is helping to stimulate the local production of foods such as rice and sugar, increasing self-sufficiency and reducing the continent's dependence on imports.

'And it is some dependence - last year alone, African countries spent over $30 billion importing food. Seven out of ten Africans earn their living from farming. Yet, even at this time of high unemployment, farming remains a low-input and low-output enterprise, unpopular with the young - a critical imbalance which Notore aims to redress with education programmes and training,' Forbes stated.

Notore received accolades for its innovation and effectiveness, at the Ernst & Young's Strategic Growth Forum in Africa.