NIGERIA- Bühler, a leading provider of food processing technology, recently announced that it has built a grain processing and innovation center (GIPC) in Kano State, to help Nigeria achieve food security.
In a statement, the Swiss multinational plant equipment manufacturer said the GPIC, which is poised to open in 2024, would support local producers in the development of safe and affordable food.
Bühler held that the center would also provide the technology and solutions to support regional food processors in the development of safe and affordable foods using local grains, such as sorghum, millet, maize, soybeans, groundnuts, pulses, and tuber crops, including cassava.
It added that the GPIC, which is based in a three-floor building spanning an area of 480 square meters, would bridge the gap between the test bench and industrial-scale production without the requirement of large investments by producers.
“Its grain cleaning, optical sorting, dehulling, preparation, tempering, and milling sections will ensure process validation, optimize the production process, and act as a center for developing new products,” the statement said.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), Nigeria will be the world’s second most populated country after India by the end of this century and will have a population of half a billion people by 2050, and over 800 million by 2100.
This rapid increase will continue to put considerable pressure on the price of available food as well as the already precarious social services and infrastructure.
As a result, the region is attempting to lessen its reliance on wheat imports, mainly from Russia and Ukraine, by increasing local grain production and processing. With the formation of the GPIC, Bühler is contributing its technological expertise to this objective.
The first step toward achieving sustained food security is for Nigeria to feed itself, followed by feeding the rest of Africa.
“Achieving food sovereignty and security necessitates a strategy: Africa has 60% of the world’s uncultivated arable land, and Nigeria has the most arable land on the continent, with 34 million hectares. Nigeria must grow and process what it consumes,” Ali Hmayed, head of the Grain Processing and Innovation Center, Bühler Nigeria, remarked.
“Bühler and our food processing partners understand this need and share the belief that the empowerment of Africa starts by adding value to its natural resources in their country of origin,” Ali Hmayed added.
According to Iyore Amadasun, Sales & Channel Business Manager at Bühler Nigeria, because local grains are adapted to the local climate, rich in vitamins and minerals, drought tolerant, and require little agricultural input, Nigeria certainly has the potential to achieve its food security ambition.