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Cassava is money spinner – Minister, Nnaji

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The Honourable Minister of Innovation, Science and Technology, Chief Uche Nnaji has said Nigeria could earn so much money and do a lot with cassava, considering the various primary products derivable from the tuber.

He noted that Nigeria is the largest producer of cassava in the world with an annual production of about 34 million tons, stressing that the production would increase with the introduction of improved cum pest resistant varieties.

The Minister said this, weekend, during facility tour of Federal Institute of Industrial Research Oshodi, FIIRO, Lagos.

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Nnaji inspected various sections of the agency, including the cassava processing lines that churn out many primary products, paper production unit using Biowastes instead of wood thereby helping in the fight against deforestation, metal fabrication centre with various ranges of lathe machines.

He also inspected bottled palm wine with shelf life of about six months.

The Minister called on entrepreneurs and manufacturers to look inward and access needed raw materials, machinery and spare parts from FIIRO and other agencies of the Ministry.

He said part of his plan for commercialisation of Research and Development results was to build pilot plants for some of the products to encourage and attract investors.

Earlier in her address, the DG, Dr. (Mrs) Jummai Adamu chronicled the history, programs and projects of the institute through a slide show.

The slide show displayed some products of the institute, including agro-sack made from banana fibre; cosmetics and soaps from Neem (Dogonyaro) leaves, among others.

The DG said the core mandate of FIIRO is to assist in accelerating the industrialisation of Nigeria through finding utilisation for the country’s raw materials and upgrading of indigenous production techniques.


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