From: Azeez Babatunde, Abuja
Guinness Nigeria says over 75 per cent of its local agricultural raw materials would be sourced from 25, 000 rural farmers in the country.
Baker Magunda, Managing Direcror of Guinness Nigeria, disclosed this at the launch of “Grow with Nigeria” initiative in presence of the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Developement, Chief Audu Ogbeh.
The local content agriculture initiative is expected to reduce import substitution and increase the use of locally produced grains in the manufacturing of Guinness Nigeria products.
According to the agriculture ministry, under the initiative, the company aims to significantly increase the use of local agric raw materials in the manufacturing of its products up from the current 75 per cent local component, directly and indirectly engaging over 25,000 smallholder farmers, across the respective value chains.
“The core objective of this initiative is to demonstrate our company’s commitment to the FG’s policy on economic diversification, local content, agric value chain dev and the growth of smallholder farmers who form an integral part of our business,” said Magunda.
However, the Minister of agriculture and rural development said importation of raw materials from abroad is synonymous to job export, thus creating unemployment locally.
“The logic of buying raw materials from local farmers takes wealth into rural areas instead of out of the shores of Nigeria. Each time we import, we are importing poverty & exporting wealth. I’m very proud of Guinness Nigeria and I urge other manufacturers to do same”
The LRM launch also saw the presentation of awards to farmers who performed well in the 2018 farming season.
One of the beneficiaries, Yoila Hanabi, the first place winner was presented with a threshing machine worth N750,000 .