By Joy Odigie
Benin, Nov. 3, 2020 TA Commodity Producer Co. Nigeria Ltd says it is organising an outgrower programme for 1,250 smallholders Oil Palm farmers in Edo.
Managing Director, TA Commodity Producer Co. Nigeria Ltd, Mr Festus Ebozele, disclosed this during an interview with newsmen in Benin on Tuesday.
Ebozele said the outgrower programme involved working with smallholder oil palm farmers to maintain and rehabilitate their farms as well as link the farmers to a ready market.
“We are targeting 1,250 oil palm farmers to operate 5,000 hectares at the ratio of a farmer to four hectares and the project will last for 10 years.
“The aim of the programme is to assist smallholder oil palm farmers get access to finance, improved yield and ready market.”
He said that the first phase of the programme had srarted with the mapping of the farms by Okomu Oil Palm PLC.
“The mapping process is ongoing and it is to help us know the status of the farms and know how to assist the farmers.
“We are working with oil palm farmers in four different cooperatives in Esan West, Uhunmwonde, Ovia North East and Ovia South West Local Government Areas of the state.
“We will help the farmers to improve their yields and then uptake the fresh fruit bunches from the farms and supply to Okomu PLC at a higher income to the farmers.”
He added that the programme would also be extended to Cocoa and Rubber farmers in the state to deepen the value chain of the crops.