To ensure that farmers especially women get financial empowerment from their produce, the Commercialization of Biofortified Crops (CBC) has trained over thirty women on biofortified/vitamin A foods processing.
Speaking during the training that took place at Owerri North LGA, Imo State, the CBC Program Manager, Mr. Goodluck Ogu charged the women to take the learning from the training seriously as it will help to empower them financially.
He hinted they have decided to bring the trainer all the way from Nnewi, Anambra to enable them learn different ways they can process their vitamin A cassava and Maize and Orange Fleshed Sweet Potatoes (OFSP).
Ogu posited that if the women concentrate only on processing of Vitamin A maize and cassava and Orange Fleshed Sweet Potatoes they could earn huge income given that they are grown widely across Nigeria owing to their wide adaptability and acceptability both in rural and urban areas, especially that they are common staples consumed in Nigeria.
He urged the women processors to concentrate in one area of processing and build network/chain with themselves so that as they process, the off-takers will buy off, adding that apart from consuming biofortified foods for healthy living, they will also become marketers of biofortified foods. He encouraged them to start from the home by preparing biofortified foods for their households.
“When you process, consume and market biofortified foods, you have no idea how much you are adding to the economy and healthy living of the State. You must ensure value addition in all you do for the awareness and knowledge of biofortified foods to permeate the nooks and crannies of the State”, he submitted.
In his remarks, the CBC project partner in Imo State and the Program Director of Foundation for Livelihood Advancement (FLA), Elder Kenneth Amogu called on the women processors to make use of all they have been taught, stressing that every woman who participated in the training should submit one or two processed foods and bring to the office to be sure that they actually learnt something.
The trainer, Emeka Okoli informed the women that alot of money can be made just processing biofortified foods, especially when they process for commercialization purposes. He revealed that all the killer diseases that one suffers can be cured using biofortified foods/vitamin A cassava and Maize. He noted that once the mothers who are the caregivers make it a point of duty to consume and market biofortified foods, their families will live healthy and earn a living. He urged the women to consume natural foods, adding that biofortified foods are natural foods that can be prepared in the home, stressing that biofortified foods are cancer and hypertension killers.
During the training, the women learnt alot, including how to prepare bread using Orange Fleshed Sweet Potatoes (OFSP) flour, CASMOI, Orange Fleshed Sweet potato juice, snacks using OFSP flour, among others.
News Echo reports that CBC organised the high level processors’ training for women, with participants drawn from the academia (FUTO, Imo Poly, etc), women farmers, processors, lady students and post graduates students, among others.