Lagos state governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, on Wednesday marked the groundbreaking of a central food security systems and logistics center in Ketu-Erefun, Epe, in the state, saying the project was proof of his government’s commitment to to meet the challenges of stakeholders in the Agri-space and give hope to the people through improved quality of life.

The project is expected to take 24 months to complete and will provide storage facilities for more than 1,500 trucks per day.

In addition, the project, which will be implemented in two phases – the pilot phase and the main phase – will create wealth for more than five million people, feed more than 10 million Lagosians and guarantee food supplies for at least 90 days.

The state’s food security systems will be built on 1.2 million square feet of land and will include components such as aggregation/storage facilities; administrative offices; Trade/brokerage facilities; packaging facilities; processing facilities; cold chain/dry goods services; logistics Services/ trailer park; water treatment plant; Health centre; Gas station / Fire station and Abattoir and storage.

Governor Sanwo-Olu also inspected a 500-bed capacity psychiatric hospital under construction, which is located a few meters away from the food security center.

Speaking at the fly-off, the Governor described the project as a testament to our government’s commitment to addressing the challenges of Agri-space stakeholders and giving people hope through improved quality of life, and said the project will improve productivity, ensure greater returns for farmers in the state, by eliminating various middlemen; facilitate improved access to modern processing and packaging services for them.

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“This project is proof of our administration’s commitment to addressing the challenges of stakeholders in agri-space and bringing hope to the people through a better quality of life.

“The project will improve productivity and ensure greater returns for our farmers by eliminating various middlemen; facilitate improved access to modern processing and packaging services for farmers; and generate useful data for use by government agencies, private sector players and multilateral agencies.

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“In addition, the Hub will provide consumers with a better buying experience; help to reduce logistics costs while ensuring the standardization of quantity and quality of agricultural products.

“I can boldly say that this is one of the most significant agricultural interventions Nigeria has ever seen. The fact that it takes place in Lagos, the country’s most populous and fastest-growing sub-national entity, means that it will undoubtedly have a significant national, regional and continental impact,” said Sanwo-Olu.

“Interestingly, Lagos is a state not often identified with agriculture, perhaps because of our relatively small landmass. And yet, time and again, we have shown the world that we can be just as valuable in this sector as any other state in Nigeria, including those blessed with much greater amounts of arable land. What we lack in land mass we more than make up for in terms of human and industrial capacity, as well as the unbeatable entrepreneurial prowess of our people,” he added.

The governor explained that in order to bring about an agricultural revolution, Lagos was responsible for the formulation of the five-year roadmap for agriculture and food systems (2021-2025), which was launched in April 2021, adding that the roadmap take full advantage of all agricultural value chains in which the state had competitive and comparative advantages, with a view to increasing its level of self-sufficiency in food production from the current 18 percent to 40 percent.

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“To implement this Road Map, we understand that targeted collaboration with the private sector and multilateral agencies is essential, which is why we emphasize the role of the private sector in everything we do.

“The development of this all-important hub will be done through a collaboration between the Government of Lagos and the private sector, through a Design-Build-Finance-Operate-and-Transfer model. At every step we will count on the private sector contributions in funding and technical advice and support,” said Governor Sanwo-Olu.

In her welcome, State Commissioner for Agriculture, Ms Abisola Olusanya, said recent global events from the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic, erratic weather patterns causing severe droughts and floods to the war between Russia and Ukraine had shed more light on the vulnerability of food systems.

The effect of the combination is felt especially in urbanized societies that are more dependent on external food sources, she says, and says a disruption in the order of food distribution had catastrophic consequences that were significant for a people’s security.

She said the Lagos Central Food Security Systems and Logistics Hub project was conceived at the beginning of Governor Sanwo-Olu’s government, who she believes has the vision for a Lagos with food reserves, which translates into a higher degree of availability. lower prices, less waste and more nutritious and healthier food products.

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“The Lagos Central Food Security Systems and Logistics Hub project was conceived at the beginning of the government of Mr. Governor who had the vision for a Lagos with food reserves, which translated into higher degree of availability, lower prices, less waste and more nutritious and healthier food products,” said the commissioner.

“Upon completion, the Food Security Systems & Central Logistics Hub will unleash the huge potential in both the midstream and downstream sectors of the agri-food sector.

“This project will reaffirm the state as the preferred market destination for agricultural products along the West African corridor.

“I believe the sheer size and scope of the project will change the economic landscape of Epe and Lagos as a whole. It would undoubtedly lead to an influx of services in sectors such as real estate, banking, logistics, hospitality and many others. This with a view to population growth, the growth of per capita income and the improvement of people’s living standards,’ assured Olusanya.

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Food security: Sanwo-Olu marks construction of largest logistics hub in Epe

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Food security: Sanwo-Olu marks construction of largest logistics hub in Epe

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