Dangote’s Rice Outgrower Project– Dangote Group has announced their plan to embark on a rice outgrower project in which rice will be planted on 25,000 Hectares in Sokoto, Jigawa and Zamfara states, in north west Nigeria.
A statement from the conglomerate says that the project will produce 225,000 metric tonnes (MT) of parboiled, milled white rice by the end of 2017.
It also says that the project is coming with a farm scheme whereby local farmers in the chosen state would plant the rice. After which Dangote would buy from them for the milling and final processing..
The scheme will employ small holders and contract farmers running into 50,000 to grow the paddy rice.
The company said the aim of the scheme is to reduce Nigeria’s food import bill.
“By year-end 2017, Dangote Rice plans to produce 225,000 MT of parboiled, milled white rice. This will allow us to satisfy 4% of the total market demand within 1 year.”
“Our model can then be successfully scaled to produce 1,000,000 MT of milled rice in order to satisfy 16% of the domestic market demand for rice over the next 5 years.”
In 2015, the Ministry of Agriculture revealed that there was a deficit in rice supplies in the country. Nigeria was producing 2.3 million metric tonnes of rice against 6.3 million metric tonnes in demand.
This made room for importation which is taking a toll on the nation’s economy.
Over the weekend, Aliko Dangote says that on Wednesday, the Company will flag off with a pilot project of 500 hectares by Gonroyo Dam, Nigeria’s second largest dam after Kainji. The dam as the name implies is located in Goronyo community, Sokoto State.
Before now, the billionaire has been named the single largest rice investor in Africa with $1 billion plunged into rice production.
He had earlier hinted his plan to establish 2 modern rice mills with the capacity to mill about 120,000 Metric Tons of rice in a day.
To that effect, Dangote’s $1 billion investment kicked off with the purchase of 150,000 hectares of land in 5 Nigerian states- Edo, Jigawa, Kebbi, Kwara, and Niger states.
As contained in the statement on Monday, the flag-off ceremony which will be performed by the Governor of Sokoto state, Alhaji Aminu Tambuwal. Rice seedlings will be distributed to the primary local farmers who will in turn plant the seed.
As expected, there is a business advantage for him, but for the most part, Dangote’s rice outgrower project will go along way in providing job opportunities for thousands of people.
Secondly it will bring to reality, the national ambition to be self-sufficient in rice production which President Buhari says is one of his priority in the food/Agricultural sector.
Involving local farmers in the scheme will empower them and reduce the migration rate from the rural communities to the cities.