Tomato Jos, an agricultural production company, says it has “commenced” a $5 million tomato processing plant in Kaduna state.
The company, which operates a commercial farm system, made the announcement via its Twitter handle on Monday.
“Today, the 27th of January, 2020, we commence our most audacious project yet; a 5million dollar tomato processing plant in Kaduna State,” the tweet read.
Today, the 27th of January, 2020, we commence our most audacious project yet; a 5million dollar tomato processing plant in Kaduna State. pic.twitter.com/F9TzxZHtBA
— Tomato Jos (@TeamTomatoJos) January 27, 2020
The company boasts of producing seven times the national yield of tomatoes in the country in the last five years.
Its model is to “help smallholder farmers to grow excellent tomatoes and convert those tomatoes to make high-quality tomato paste”.
“The farmers who partner with us receive support during the growing season and are guaranteed a fair, consistent price when their crops are ready for harvest. And once our product hits the market, the consumers will get to eat fresh, delicious tomato paste while supporting the Nigerian economy,” a statement on its website read.
In a video documentary, Mira Mehta, the company’s managing director, said the factory will produce 85 tonnes of tomatoes daily.
Nigeria is reported to be Africa’s third-largest importer of tomato paste, importing from China and some other Asian countries.
In February, Audu Ogbeh, the former minister of agriculture, had said the federal government would ban the importation of tomato paste before the end of 2019.