Ellah Lakes partners IITA to exploit N360bn soybean market
January 10, 2023160 views0 comments
By Onome Amuge
Nigerian agribusiness firm, Ellah Lakes Plc., has announced the signing of a seed production and technical support agreement between its subsidiary, Adani Staple Crop Processing Zone Food Company Limited, a subsidiary of Ellah Lakes and the International Institute for Tropical Agriculture (IITA) aimed at strengthening Nigeria’s competitiveness in the global soybean market.
The company made the announcement in a notice presented to the Nigerian Stock Exchange, signed by Modupe Boardman-Ejikeme, dated January 9,2023.
According to the statement, the initiative was on a seed multiplication programme,which, in the first phase, involves the production of high yielding soybean seed varieties on five hectares of land located in IITA Ibadan, Oyo State and subsequently, on five hundred hectares of land located in Adani, Enugu State.
It also noted that IITA brings to this endeavour with Ellah Lakes, its expertise in the production and supply of high-quality breeder and foundation seedlings to private sector seed producers.
The partnership agreement between both companies is also expected to facilitate the production of premium quality soybean seedlings for cultivation at Adani SCPZ in Enugu State with IITA providing all the technical support required to produce the seedlings for the company.
The statement further explained that the improved variety of breeder seeds is expected to yield 2.5 metric tonnes of quality soybean per hectare, 150 per cent higher than the Nigerian national average of 1.0 metric tonnes per hectare and at par with output in South American countries such as Brazil and Argentina
“Soybean is an important source of plant-based protein that contains dietary fiber, vitamins and minerals. Soybean consists of 20% oil, making it an important crop for producing edible oil. A by-product from the oil production, soymeal, is used as a high-protein animal feed in the poultry and aquaculture industries. The demand for soybean in Nigeria is estimated to be in excess of 1.2 million metric tons per annum, which is a market value of over N360 billion (approximately US$780 million).
Additionally, soybean from Nigeria has huge export potential because Nigerian Soyabean is Non-Genetically Modified, it has a wider range of applications including as input into infant cereals and textured vegetable protein – which is often used as meat analogue or meat extender,” it stated.
With its partnership with IITA, Adani SCPZ will be able to significantly boost productivity at its 3,700-hectare farm in Adani, Enugu State, and will be on track to achieving a target output of 7,500 metric tons of soybean per annum upon full cultivation of the property.
It also marks an important milestone on the company’s strategic path to build Staple Crop Processing Zones across the country, with Adani being the flagship site.
Chuka Mordi, the chief executive officer of Ellah Lakes, said the development is a symbolic and significant milestone on the company’s strategic path to build staple crop processing zones across the country.
“Adani remains our flagship site and under the supervision of the IITA, we expect to accelerate progress in Enugu State, during the course of 2023,” he added.