*Flags off broilers project
The Ogun State government Wednesday said it is targeting no fewer than 50,000 people, mostly youths, to benefit from various agricultural projects in the state.
The state’s Commissioner for Agriculture, Dr Adeola Odedina, made the disclosure during the flag-off of the second phase of the state’s broiler project at Eweje Farm Settlement in Odeda Local Government Area.
Odedina added that the state was partnering with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), agro-processing firms and other stakeholders, to venture into various agricultural productions for poultry, cassava, rice, millet and maize, among others.
According to him, the state government has already started land preparation for over 23,000 youths who had registered for cassava production.
“Twenty-three thousand youths have registered for cassava opportunity. We have started land preparation. In totality, over fifty thousand people have registered for opportunities in agriculture and a good number of them are young people,” he stated.
The commissioner, who assured that the state would be supporting farmers with farm inputs, land and loan facilities, among others, noted that the gesture was aimed at making agriculture more attractive to the youths.
Odedina disclosed that in the first phase of the broiler project, 54 youths raised 54,000 broilers, adding that the second phase would also turn out another 54,000 broilers.
He explained that the second phase of the broiler production would produce over 110,000 kg of broiler meat which, according to him, would further reduce the dependency on foreign poultry products.
He said: “We have been very successful in raising young people as pilots to introduce or stimulate the interest of other young people in poultry value chain.
“The first set of beneficiaries are 54 youths, tendering 54,000 broilers with profit of an average of N130,000 in six weeks and we have been reliably informed by the youths themselves that in this round, they are targeting over N200,000 in six weeks.
“These youths are supposed to go for four rounds or five, every six weeks. Each beneficiary would be earning about N150,000, I think that is a very good way to start with the youths.
“And because of this pilot phase, over 9,000 youths have registered with the Ministry of Agriculture to participate in this opportunity given by the Ogun State government in poultry value chain.”
Also speaking, one of the beneficiaries, Omolara Mafe, commended the state government for the opportunity and urged youths to embrace agriculture.
Mafe, a graduate of Accounting, said she would be making N200,000 during the six weeks when the broilers would be sold.