Moringa Farmers set to flag off N9bn Nationwide Plantation
Moringa Farmers and Manufacturers Association of Nigeria in partnership with a Nigerian firm, has disclosed plans to flag off a N9billion Moringa oleifera farming plantation nationwide, for local and export purposes, and to also tackle unemployment problem in the country.
The association also plans to during the next rainy season mobilise 10 million youths across the federation to cultivate Moringa trees, and also sell the plants to meet both local and high export demand.
Its President, Mr Michael Ashimashiga, who spoke yesterday in Abuja, during a press conference, said the association, which has about 5,000 members, is targeting 10 million trees for the rainy season planting to cultivate and sell the plant in view of its high demand locally and internationally.
Noting that the development of the country depends mainly on agriculture, Ashimashiga said moringa is a plant that does not only have health benefits but economically viable.
The president said there is a ready market to absorb each farmer’s yield, adding that the association would buy the plant from the farmers.
Ashimashiga, who said the association would sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the off-takers to support the youth, also said each beneficiary, would be given a plot of land and moringa seeds at no cost, to cultivate.
Moringa oleifera is a fast-growing, drought-resistant tree of the Moringaceae family. It is commonly known as drumstick tree and used as vegetable among other things. Moringa is very useful in high quality poultry yield among others. The economic benefit also cannot be overemphasised.
Noting that India and China are generating good revenue from their moringa plantations, he said Nigeria has the capacity to do better in terms of revenue generation from the plant.
“Nigeria’s moringa is one of the best in the whole world, unfortunately it is not on the list of agricultural products and we will keep clamouring for it to be included to help solve the problem of unemployment.
“Supporting the moringa farmers will help everyone because we have the best moringa in the world, our foreign off takers have come to see it and what one hectare of moringa produces, 50 hectares of rice can’t produce,” he said.