U.S To Assist Nigeria To Develop Retail Food Industry

The United  States (U.S) government has assured Nigeria of its  readiness  to  support   current  efforts on food security to  enable consumers enjoy stable supplies and reasonable food prices.

Speaking with journalists in Lagos before the commencement of Retail Food Development Conference with Building Capacity to Create and Sustain Superior Performance in the Retail Food Business in Nigeria as its theme, United States Department of Agriculture (USDA’s) Regional Agricultural Counselor for Nigeria, Ghana, Benin, Cameroon and Liberia, Kurt Seifarth said U.S will grant aid to help increase food production and ensure that the food chain works.

He said the USDA had explored a number of tangible measures which, if implemented, would have a significant impact on food security and directly benefit consumers.

According to him, supermarkets and other retail outlets  have key roles to play in feeding the population as  part of the food value chains, adding that it has become necessary to strengthen safety controls to help smallholders engage with large retailers on wider markets for their agricultural products.

He said smallholders and large commercial retailers need an enabling environment with adequate training, storage infrastructure, new skills and methods with which to improve the resilience of their production systems.

He commended the Federal Government for containing the outbreak of bird flu, adding that it demonstrated the  preparedness of the government to combat poultry  health emergencies.

According to him, the bird flu impact on U.S was devastating with the  incidence and spread of high pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI)  growing faster than expected.

He noted that quick action and good biosecurity measures were the keys to control highly pathogenic avian influenza, adding that the U.S was quite unprepared for the avian influenza outbreak.

He said the country was so shocked by the outbreak that it introduced a high surveillance programme with stringent biosecurity measures.

The outbreak experienced in America which came to an end in June, was the largest animal disease outbreak the country has ever experienced.



Source: The nation Nigeria

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