Nigerians Spend $1 Billion Yearly on the Importation of Fruit Juice – Agric Minister

fjInformation emerging from the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Dr Akinwumi Adesina, has revealed that Nigerians spend $1 billion yearly importing fruit juice.

Dr Adesina made this known in Abuja while delivering his address at a meeting with Coca-Cola executives on how to improve starch and sweetening in the country. He described Nigeria as the second largest producer of citrus in the world after china, noting, however, that it was disheartening for Nigeria to still import concentrates for juice production.

The minister also added that Nigeria imports 150,000 metric tonnes of sweetening and 100,000 metric tonnes of sugar. He further revealed that Nigeria imports 98 per cent of the sugar used in the country, therefore stating that Nigeria could produce 100 per cent fruit juice through partnership with Coca-Cola Company and other relevant stakeholders.

Adesina, however, stated that for Nigeria to be self-sufficient in sweetening and starch, there is the need to produce cassava in large quantity and at a lower cost. He then said that the ministry was working closely with Cargil Company and flour mill to establish starch and sweetening plants in the country. He urged the Coca-Cola Company to partner those companies to establish plants, assuring them that the Federal Government would support through import duties substitution.


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