By; RAYMOND TEDUNJAYE, Lagos
The December edition of the Eko City Farmers’ Fair and Appreciation Day has been scheduled to hold on Sunday, 20th December 2020, the Lagos State Commissioner for Agriculture, Ms. Abisola Olusanya has said.
The Commissioner explained that the Fair would enable Lagosians to shop for all farm produce straight from the farm at farm gate prices as well as buy rice at N20,000 per 50Kg bag, a result of the intervention of the State government in collaboration with the Federal and Kebbi state Governments.
It will be recalled that Olusanya had told newsmen on Monday that about 100,000 bags of 50kg of rice were being expected to be sold to Lagosians during the festive period for N20,000 per bag.
Olusanya noted that the Fair which would take place at the Ndubusi Kanu Park in Alausa, Ikeja would further help to upgrade the agricultural supply chain by connecting all the agricultural value chains with their markets.
The Commissioner opined that the Farmers’ Fair would be a platform for the best of the city’s producers to meet with consumers and end users using the traditional and innovative development methods to showcase a well organised high quality market to meet the consumers’ increasing demand for farm produce.
“On Sunday, 20th December, 2020, the State will be hosting the Christmas edition of the Eko City Farmers’ Fair where Lagosians can shop for their fresh farm produce at affordable prices.
“The event which will hold at the Ndubusi Kanu Park, Alausa, Ikeja will also include a short ceremony to appreciate our farmers who have done everything in their power to ensure that we did not negatively feel the impacts of the corona virus on our food supplies.
“It will also be a platform for the best of the city’s producers to meet with consumers and end users using the traditional and innovative development methods to showcase a well organised high quality market to meet the consumers’ increasing demand for farm produce,” Olusanya averred.
She pointed out that the objectives of the market are to connect producers and make shopping entertaining; to make produce accessible and affordable to consumers; to preserve the nutritional value of farm produce and to promote the “farm to fork” concept of the input and output policy of the State Government.
The Commissioner noted that farmers in the State lack direct access to markets, a situation that has led to them selling their produce to middlemen at rather ridiculous farm gate prices adding that the Eko City Framers’ Fair would help in eradicating this.
“Farmers in the State lack direct access to markets and this led to the selling of their produce to middlemen at ridiculous farm gate prices. Farmers that are able to penetrate the market find it difficult to break through cartels by the market associations. Therefore, they are forced to sell at the association dictated prices. These challenges have restricted many of the farmers to subsistent production,” Olusanya asserted.
She explained that the Eko City Farmers’ Fair is intended to increase productivity of farmers as well as create an avenue for inclusive business where farmers make more profit since they are selling directly to consumers.