In its bid to actualise the target of one egg per day for school children across the country, the Federal Government on Tuesday signed Memorandum of Understanding with Tuns Farms Limited under the National Egg Production Scheme to be financed by the Bank of Industry to the tune of N25bn.
According to the government, the scheme is aimed at increasing egg production in the country to 50 million table eggs per day by 2018 as well as create one million jobs.
The Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Chief Audu Ogbeh, who signed on behalf of the Federal Government at the headquarters of the ministry in Abuja, declared that the government was ready to give the programme the required assistance in order to ensure that Nigeria attained self-sufficiency in egg production.
Addressing the Chairman of Tuns Farms, Chief Olatunde Badmus, the minister said, “We are ready to give you the necessary support to make you keep growing and be able to grow others. We are about to begin a huge school-feeding programme; we need to give every child at least three eggs a week if not an egg per day, because we need these children to have a greater source of protein in their diet.”
Giving further details of the MoU, Badmus stated that the ministry would assist the BoI to access the N25bn from the Central Bank of Nigeria to finance the project.
He said, “The ministry appointed us as a consultant and manager of the scheme. We are to create one million employment through the scheme and produce 50 million table eggs daily by 2018.
“The Ministry of Agriculture will assist the BoI to access N25bn from the CBN under the agricultural scheme. The BoI will select some commercial banks that will participate in the programme, and loans under this programme are at a single-digit interest rate.”
He noted that part of the terms of the MoU was that Tuns Farms would recommend eligible entrepreneurs to access the N25bn facility through the BoI, adding that the company would also develop customised and standard-feed concentrate for the scheme.
Badmus said, “In addition, the company will recommend standard specification and costing for the scheme, monitor activities of entrepreneurs involved in the scheme, and support the BoI through the national technical committee in the selection process of commercial banks to disburse and recoup the N25bn anchor borrower facility from the CBN.
“We are to also select entrepreneurs/stakeholders across the country for recommendation to the technical committee for final ratification and appointment to participate in the scheme.”