Global agri-business Olam International has begun production at two new poultry plants in Nigeria following an investment of around $150 million.
President of Nigeria Muhammadu Buhari inaugurated Olam’s poultry feed mill in Kaduna State. The company also started work at its integrated poultry and fish feed mill at Ilorin in Kwara State.
With a combined capacity of 720,000 metric tonnes of poultry feed annually, Olam claims its facilities directly address a significant supply gap for poultry meat in Nigeria, giving farmers and distributors access to high-quality feed at competitive prices.
As part of growth in the country, Olam has a team of veterinatians who will train up to 10,000 farmers a year in best poultry farming practices.
Given around 75% of poultry farming in Nigeria is managed by smallholders, Olam said its poultry initiatives have the potential to indirectly create ‘150,000 to 200,000 rural jobs’ for Nigerians as the sector is stimulated.
Olam projects that its investment will enhance domestic poultry production by approximately 8 billion eggs and 100 million kg of poultry meat – the equivalent of 40 eggs and 0.5kg of chicken per Nigerian per year. This is expected to result in a reduction in the foreign exchange currency spent on frozen imports.
In Kwara State, Olam’s new fish feed manufacturing facility will boost feed supply to help meet rising demand in Nigeria for fish.
Olam said one of the barriers to increasing production is readily available and affordable floating fish feed – it currently accounts for over 70% of the local farmers’ production costs. The Kwara mill has an initial capacity of 75,000 metric tonnes of fish feed per year.
Olam CEO for Grains, KC Suresh, said: “We are proud to welcome his excellency to our latest investment. We have leveraged our deep knowledge of Nigeria – 27 years’ experience across exports, imports, manufacturing and farmer engagement – to identify the needs of Nigerian consumers.
“We thank the governors of Kaduna and Kwara States for supporting our projects. Our world-class facilities will provide high-quality, cost-effective products that will help farmers and rural Nigerians to prosper. In the same way that Olam Grains has built a highly successful wheat milling footprint across Africa, we will be looking to scale our animal feed operations, both in and beyond Nigeria.”
Nigeria minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Audu Ogbeh added: “This development symbolises the national growth and stability of our nation. It will contribute to the reduction of crime and the rural agenda. Olam is thoroughly Nigerian and since its incorporation here in 1989 it now operates across the length of the country. I would like to acknowledge their investments in the country.”
© FoodBev Media Ltd 2017