Yuletide: Processors allay fear of rice scarcity

The Rice Processors Association of Nigeria (RPAN) says members have the capacity to meet Nigeria’s demand for rice during and beyond the Yuletide.

The Chairman of RPAN, Alhaji Mohammed Abubakar, who gave the assurance in Abuja, down-played speculations going round that there would be scarcity of rice during the Christmas period, adding that there would be enough supply of rice in the country.

“I can assure Nigerians that they will find rice everywhere and throughout this festive period,” he said.

According to him, the combined capacity of integrated mills produced about 150,000 trucks load of rice on a daily basis as well as 1.8 million metric tonnes annually.

Abubakar said the figure was different from millions of metric tonnes produced annually by small scale millers and local millers.

He also noted that the positive impact of the Federal Government’s border closure on rice millers was enormous.

Abubakar said that Nigeria relied on rice importation with only one rice mill in operation about 10 years ago, but today the country could boast of 40 integrated milling machines of world standard.

He disclosed that before the border closure, members of the association were complaining that they could not sell the product in their warehouses but have now exhausted their stock.

Abubakar said some RPAN members, who closed their factories because of lack of patronage, were now back in business because of border closure.

The chairman said that he was at the Central Bank of Nigeria’s headquarters on behalf of his members for possible grants for expansion of their rice business. (NAN)


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