“Nigerian Farmers and regulatory agencies should continue to link up in order to foster the desired level of growth in quality food processing generally, with particular reference to sorghum products.”
SON Director – General, Osita Aboloma, gave this admonition in a paper presented at a training on food safety standards for food processors.
It was organised by the International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT) in collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (FMARD), International Institute for Tropical Agriculture (IITA)
Represented by the Kano and Jigawa States Coordinator, Alhaji Yunusa Muhammadu, he said that the organisation continually promote product quality and safety, including for the agro allied sector, through the elaboration, review, adoption and harmonization of standards via stakeholders’ active involvement.
” Other areas of SON contribution to general trade facilitation include, product certification, management systems certification, laboratory testing, metrology services and national capacity development through the SON training services, ” he said.
He disclosed that the SON internationally accredited Laboratories, management systems certification and training services would ensure local and international acceptance of all the services enjoyed by stakeholders including sorghum processors particularly on food safety and regulation.
Dr. Hakeem Ajeigbe, Sorghum Commodity Specialist/ICRISAT Nigeria Country Representative said the objectives of the project is to enhance agricultural productivity of small and medium scale farmers and processors and improve value addition along priority value chains in the participating states by training sorghum food actors on the appropriate food safety standards and regulations.
*Cross – section of sorghum farmers and processors listening with rapt attention during the training.
Also in a joint-paper on Harvesting, Threshing, Cleaning and Packaging of Sorghum, Messrs. Hakeem Ajeigbe, Akinseye F.M. and Aliyu Adinoyi of ICRISAT, asserted the need to double the efforts put into production for harvesting and post -harvest activities in order to reduce loss and optimize profit on investment.
Other post – harvest activities such as drying and storage should be given adequate and appropriate attention, “he said.
The training attracted small and medium scale farmers and processors of sorghum from four ATASP-1 zones, namely Adani-Omor, Bida-Badeggi, Kano-Jigawa and Kebbi-Sokoto