Lagos State government said that it will soon inaugurate 50 Meat Vans at Oko-Oba abattoir as well as launch the Lagos Last Mile Meat Shops. The measures, according to the State government, are aimed at controlling and preserving the meat, thereby ensuring the consumption of wholesome meats by residents while bringing the market closer to the people.

The State Commissioner for Agriculture, Ms. Abisola Olusanya made this known while giving the account of stewardship of the Ministry at the Y2024 Ministerial Press Briefing of the first year, second term in office of Governor Babajide Olusola Sanwo-Olu Administration held today at the Bagauda Kaltho Press Centre, Secretariat, Alausa-Ikeja, Lagos. Ikeja 

Abisola said that the Lagos State Government remains committed to making the state an organised food system and value chain destination, stressing that the government is working around its five-year Agricultural and Food Systems Roadmap (2021-2025) as well as on the Food Security Systems Policy Document.

She said the unveiling of Lagos Last Mile Meat shops and utilisation of new Vans would ensure the availability of meat for residents, create market access and curb the illegality of the transportation of meat carcasses across the state.

The Commissioner also added that the state in the last year had launched various social intervention programmes such as trader monies for Market men and women, and embarked on Agric business support initiatives, while building farms across the state.

She said: "The government had over the period under review secured the Lagos food system, leaving no one behind through the Lagos Agric Scholars' programme while supporting with extension services. We have also supported more than 23986 thereby exceeding our target which included rice, fish and poultry farmers”.

“The state government has through its Coconut Value Chain Development, trained youths and with the Eko Agro mechanisation project the state had been able to procure tractors and mechanised farm implements for the beneficiaries", she added.

Olusanya said the State Government, through the Ministry of Agriculture, has continued to embark on social interventions under the Eko Cares initiative which include the Ounje Eko, food discounted sales, distribution of staple foods to vulnerable families and a welfare initiative for residents, among others.

The Commissioner also added that the State's Agriculture Sector has contributed about N7 trillion to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in the last five years, stressing that the Lagos food market size which is about N9 billion daily and N5 trillion in annual transaction values is gaining momentum as government continue to scale up food production activities in the state.

Special Adviser to the Governor, on Agriculture, Dr. Oluwarotimi Fashola stressed that the government through its Rice Mill initiative is partnering with different states in Nigeria to sustain the availability of paddy production and enhance productivity.

Fashola, who lamented the unavailability of adequate land for rice production in the state, said that the present administration is working around the clock to ensure the availability of the staple food all year round.

In his words. "Because of the size of rice needed, Mr. Governor signed an MOU with Niger State being the largest producer of paddy in the country. The Imota Rice mill needs 200,000 tonnes of paddy. The partnership with other states is to ensure the sustainability of production. We extend our hand of fellowship to all the South West states”.

"If we have 20 percent of paddy from Lagos, other South West states will give 40 percent. There is no single state that can give us all. Once there is paddy we know the production of rice will be sustained. We can not be doing a stop-and-start approach, it will be injurious and that is why our efforts are to ensure paddy production is sustained", he stated.

The Special Adviser averred that 100,000 tonnes of paddy will give smooth operation for the Rice Mill but the State at the moment is operating below the target, assuring that the recent collaborations with critical stakeholders will soon yield positive results.

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