The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (FMARD) has said ten ststes will be getting an intervention fund for the completion of large-scale rice mills with a combined minimum capacity of 320 metric tons per day.
The Minister, Dr Mohammad Abubakar, made this known at the 45th regular meeting of the National Council on Agriculture and Rural Development (NCARD) in Jos, Plateau State.
Abubakar revealed that the mills would be located in Jigawa, Kano, Adamawa, Niger, Kaduna, Gombe, Ekiti, Ogun, Bayelsa and Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
He said that the government is working to develop clusters, rural nodal centres and rural cottage industries, as well as establish six Special Agro-industrial Processing Zones (SAPZ) nationwide.
According to him, in achieving its mandate of ensuring food security, employment generation and wealth creation in the country, FMARD is committed to supporting the establishment of over 100 processing centres in rural communities across the country.
Abubakar said his ministry would continue to sustain its programmes such as farm inputs subsidy support, registration, clustering and validation of farmers, mainstreaming women and youth in agribusiness, and developing cooperatives along various agricultural commodity value chains.
“Other effort is the development of Agribusiness Incubation Centres, with capacity to train 4,000 beneficiaries per session, located in the Federal University of Agriculture, Makurdi, Umaru Musa Yar’Adua University, Katsina, University of Ibadan, University of Maiduguri, Niger Delta University and University of Abuja,” he added.
He said the ministry had facilitated the production and distribution of 920 metric tonnes of assorted improved seeds and 67,000 litres of agrochemicals to 1,397,469 farmers.