Ondo Rice Farmers to get Mills

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The Chairman of Rice Farmers Association of Nigeria (RIFAN), Ondo State chapter, Prince George Oladapo has said that for the silos in Oda road to be fully utilised,  there must be enough functional mills for the various commodities they are meant for.

Oladapo who said this in an interview with The Hope noted that the silos are of immense benefit to farmers in the state. He said a bigger capacity milling machine for rice farmers will be ready this year at Igbara Oke and milling will start, so that the silos can be fully engaged.

According to him, what is produced now is not enough for home consumption let alone storage, hence the need for a large and functional mill.

Oladapo stressed that the output of farmers would be greatly increased with large milling factories since they know that the problem of wastage is no longer there.

”Part of those things working against farmers from producing in large quantities is where to store it, supposing I can sell off what I produce, when we picked interest in rice production, we realised that there would be a reason for us to utilise the silos and store for the next season.

“Other farmers are taken advantage of it. If rice farmers are not using it this year, maize farmers can utilize it, cassava farmers can store garri. So, by and large, the silos have been of immense benefit to farmers in the state. Even the Federal Government sometimes makes use of it by storing grains and for other uses”, he said.

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While saying that farmers have continued to increase their output annually because of assurance of a place to store it, Oladapo said more people particularly youths are getting interested in rice cultivation, which he opined is better than civil service jobs.

When asked about the mill at Layere in Ogbese in Akure North local government, Oladapo said the capacity can not even take care of home consumption.“The rice mill in Ogbese is a mini one of about 15tonnes per day, it can not even take care of home consumption, let alone preservation, but a bigger mill will be ready in Igbara Oke before the end of the year and the silos will be fully engaged”, he explained.

He called on the government to sustain the association and give them a level playing ground, will become accessible so that most of the things that are difficult for them to access will be easier.

The silos constructed long ago have not been put to use until recently.