A SOYA bean seed shortage is looming, an expert has said.
The Project Director, Cas-sava: Adding Value for Africa Phase II (CAVA II) Project, Prof. Kolawole Adebayo, issued the warning, saying that the country may experience a critical shortage, if there is not enough production to meet national requirements for the coming season.
Soya bean shortages is threatening the viability of poultry. It is one of the critical components in the production of stock feed. The shortage, watchers fear, would affect the cost of cooking oil, stockfeeds, chicken and other poultry meats, pork and commercially grown fish hence the need to urgently address this to reduce imports.
Speaking with The Nation, Adebayo said Nigeria can produce about 400,000 tonnes, but it is producing less.
According to him, soya bean has not been grown because most farmers don?t have financiers and enough funding.
He said incentives to encourage soyabeans were needed for the sector, adding that the government needed to focus on programmes that would increase the hectarage under soya bean.
Coordinator, Natnu Preneur Broiler Outgrower Scheme, Mr. Gbolade Adewole, said poultry producers, have borne the brunt of shortages of soya beans in the market. He said if the soya bean shortage persists, the company might be forced to reduce production.
According to him, there has been shortage of key raw materials like soya beans and soya bean meal because it is imported.
According to experts, there is need to rehabilitate and upgrade both silo and bagged depots to ensure safe storage of strategic grain reserves.
For industry watchers, a shortage of soya beans means that the capacity utilisation of seed crushing and extraction plants will reduce.