By Mercy Omoike
Lagos, Sept. 17, 2020 A snail farmer, Mr Sunday Ido, has called for the exploration and full utilisation of the untapped benefits of the snail slime value chain in Nigeria.
Ido gave the advice in an interview with journalists on Thursday in Lagos.
Wikipaedia, an Online dictionary says, “Snail slime is a kind of mucus, an external bodily secretion, which is produced by snails, and are gastropod mollusks.’’
According to Ido, the benefits of snail slime value chain is still being underutilised in Nigeria, as we are yet to tap into its immense potentialities.
”The value chain of snail slime is still much untapped in Nigeria. However, recently, it has been discovered that snail slime is one of the next big thing in the pharmaceutical and cosmetics industry.
“Pharmaceutical companies make use of snail slime for a lot of their products, but majorly for skin care and cosmetic purposes.
“It has been discovered that snail slime has healing powers on the skin because of its glycol-protein content that helps rejuvenates the human skin.
“Snail slime helps the body fight hazards such as rough surfaces, skin bacteria and protects the body from ultraviolet sun rays that may cause damage to the skin.
“The slime also clear scars, stretch marks, skin colour pigmentation, and they serve as natural moisturisers for the skin too.
“All these benefits and more are what make the snail slime value chain to gain more relevance,’’ the agricultural entrepreneur said.
Ido said that the value of snail slime in the international market had grown exponentially, encouraging local farmers to tap into its potential.
He also called for more researches and acquisition of knowledge on the technicalities involved in local snail slime extraction.
“In the global cosmetic market, snail slime is valued high; a litre of moisturised snail slime currently costs more than an ounce of gold in the international market.
“From the inherent potentialities of snail slime, very soon, most people will not be interested in it for consumption alone, but will aim at the gold mine in the slime.
“There are technicalities local snail farmers need to learn on how to extract the slime from the snails without harming them.
“We do not need to kill the snails to extract the slime; we, however, need more research to be able to tap fully into the benefits of snail slime value chain.
“Though, there are machines that can aid seamless extraction of the snail slime, we have not discovered that yet in the country.
“We have also witnessed people getting healed from stroke with snail slime treatment. We can generate a lot of income from snail slime, if we get it right,” Ido said.
According to him, there are people involved in snail slime business in the country and are making so much money from it, which we are not aware of.
“They do it secretly and make a lot of income from the export of the slime from the pharmaceutical companies that are ready to buy from them.
“They are making money, but are not contributing to the growth of the snail slime value chain by hoarding this knowledge.
“We should popularise the potentialities of the snail slime so that many people will be able to tap into it,” the farmer said.