Towards the upliftment of farmers’ livelihood, companies using agricultural produce as raw materials have been urged to source for their raw materials locally, to boost the country’s economy.
The Minister of Science and Technology, Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu, who stated this during his visit to Nestle’s state of the art Flowergate Factory in Sagamu, Ogun State, in company of the Director General, Federal Institute of Industrial Research, Oshodi (FIIRO), Dr. (Mrs) Gloria Elemo, commended the company for its contributions to the industrialisation of the country through its technical training and locally sourced programmes.
While noting that sourcing of raw materials is a major challenge facing industries, he urged Nestle to increase its raw materials sourced locally from 80 per cent to 100 per cent, to create jobs.
“Because Nigeria is the largest market in Africa and we have the largest population, Nestle should bring one research centre to the country, it’s going to help them and even the country because they will develop products that will benefit the country. I am happy that they are training their staff and that is the way to fight poverty; they should bring in more Nigerians to work in their company to tackle the issue of unemployment.”
The Managing Director/CEO of Nestle Nigeria, Mr. Mauricio Alarcon said his company is deeply committed to its policy of creating shared value, by working with the local communities to create opportunities and improve livelihoods.
He said soya beans and palm oil are sourced locally, noting that the company works with local farmers to improve farming practices and to also increase the yield and quality through the Grain Quality Improvement Programme.
He also highlighted the company’s Technical Training Improvement Programme, which is an 18-month intensive training focused on equipping young graduates with polyvalent technology skills.