Lagos commences sale of Lake Rice for Yuletide; 50kg N17,000, 25kg N8,500

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The Lagos State Government, on Tuesday, commenced the sale of its popular brand of rice, Lake Rice, in preparation for the coming Yuletide celebration.
Commissioner for Agriculture, Prince Gbolahan Lawal, said that Lake Rice was available for sale in 10 centres across the state.
Lawal said that the rice was available at the Agricultural Development Authority Complex, Oko-Oba; Lagos State Agriculture Inputs Supply Authority (LAISA), Ojo and the Blue Roof at LTV Complex, Agidingbi, Ikeja.
The commissioner outlined other centres such as the Lake Rice Sales Centre at Farm Service Centre, Epe; Odogunyan Farm Service Centre, Ikorodu; Teslim Balogun Stadium, Surulere and Farm Centre, Ajah.
The rice can also be bought at Government Technical School, Ikotun; Farm Service Centre, Badagry and the Mobolaji Johnson Sports Centre, Rowe Park, Yaba.
He said that a 50kg bag of Lake Rice costs N17,000, while the 25kg bag would be sold for N8,500, warning that the commodity should not be sold above the approved prices.
“For individual buyers, you cannot buy more than two bags in order to allow the rice go round everybody that needs it.
“Yes, it was N12,000, then N14,000 and now N17,000; the challenge has always been with the farmers. The cost of production then is not the same as now.
“The Federal Government and other states are working assiduously to ensure that the prices are within the range,” he said.
The commissioner said the Lake rice initiative was an intervention programme, adding that the completion of the Lagos State Rice Mill in Imota, would make the rice more affordable.
He said the cost of production was responsible for the increase in price which was further expanded by the border closure.
“For Lagos, this arrangement is an intervention programme.
By the time we have our own rice mill, which is over 50 per cent completion now, we will be able to determine how much we sell, and we will come up with a business case that will be affordable to everybody in Lagos and also people that want to partner with us in the demand.
“So our N17,000 is a blank check, we get supply, we pay Kebbi State, the farmers and the millers, whatever we are getting and we are selling it, is very competitive.
“By the time we have our own mill; we can say this is how much we want to be selling it,” he said.
He said that the state did not have total control over the price of the rice due to the partnership.
“Now we are not in control of that value chain; the only thing we are in control of is, we are buying from Kebbi and we sell,” he added.
Lawal said that the state government remained committed to boosting food security in Lagos.
He said that the government would continue to ensure adequate production and fair distribution of Lake Rice, with a view to ensuring its availability to the masses in the various designated sales centres across the state.
The commissioner said work was in progress at the Imota rice mill, adding that upon completion, it has the capacity to produce 26 million 50kg bags annually and also create 250,000 direct and indirect jobs.
“It is a 32 tons capacity mill, it has the capacity to produce 26 million 50kg bags annually and it is going to create almost 250,000 jobs directly or indirectly.
“For now, we have a partner in Kebbi State. Kebbi also depends on the farmers, it is not as if it is Kebbi that is also milling, no, Kebbi State facilitate the farmers and the millers.
“What we do in Lagos essentially, is the marketing, so it is difficult for us. It is an intervention programme, it is transit period for us.
“This policy is what we call import substitution industrialisation policy of the federal government.
“Now there is a policy, a total ban on importation of rice because the rice farmers association in Nigeria, they have capacity to produce 10 million tons of paddy rice,” the commissioner said.

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