Local paddy rice processors beg for training in Jigawa, Though parboiling and milling of paddy rice is one of the fastest growing small scale businesses in Jigawa State, owing to increase in the production of the crop, majority if not all of the processors ventured into it without formal training.
Most of the processors engaged in parboiling and milling rice rely on the traditional procedure of boiling the grain before milling it for the production of processed rice that is free of stones and other debris.
Hadejia zone is the hub of such business in the state, being the area where the crop is largely produced, though, despite the concentration of the processors, the available market for the commodity is limited to some local government areas within the zone. This is because they hardly produce enough to supply other markets beyond Hadejia.
This reporter, who visited some of areas, gathered that majority of those in the business follow the traditional way of processing the commodity, particularly the parboiling procedure.
Daily Trust gathered that some of the millers processed as much as 60 bags of paddy rice daily at the peak of production while at some other period the production drops to as low as 30 bags.
Speaking to our reporter, one of the rice processors, Alhaji Awaisu Umar, said he did not know about any other effective procedure of processing paddy rice than the traditional way.
“We process our paddy rice using the traditional method. We have never received any training or assistance from either government or any private sector concern. “Lack of exposure to new techniques of processing paddy rice into polished rice is a great setback for our business.
“In the past, many organisations from the private sector, mostly NGOs and other international donor partners promised to give us some form of assistance and training but that is yet to happen,” he said.
Also speaking to Daily Trust, another rice miller, Yahaya Umar Latafa, said he did not acquire any formal training apart from his traditional knowledge of processing rice. He said after parboiling the rice for eight to 10 hours, it will be dried and winnowed before milling.
According to him, for the parboiling of 30 bags of paddy rice to be effectively done, he needed a truck load of firewood which they usually bought at the cost of N16,000.
On how they get their supply, Latafa said they buy from farmers through their agents saying, they buy a bag of paddy rice at the cost of N8,500 to 9,000 depending on the season.