The Association of Master Bakers and Caterers of Nigeria has called for a revival of the cassava bread initiative as it could help relief Nigeria of the current economic woes bedeviling the country.
This was made known by the Publicity Secretary of the Association, Mr Joseph Ubah, on Thursday, June 15, 2017.
He revealed that Nigeria could inject about N255billion into the country’s economy every year if the initiative is taken more seriously.
According to Ubah, the initiative which involved the use of composite flour containing 10 per cent cassava flour, for baking bread, would discourage exportation of wheat and promote cassava production in the country and at the same time, put bakers back to business thereby reducing the rate of unemployment.
While urging the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development to take up the challenge and revive the initiative, Ubah, bemoaned the perceptible inconsistency as to the continuation of some government policies.
The publicity secretary stressed that large consignments of wheat were still being imported into the country.
He further explained how the waning economy could gain fresh boost as farmers would be forced to step up their production game while the government saves up the money for wheat importation to fund other national development projects or tackle other pressing needs.
He said: “We have been able to reach a point where a consumer would not be able to differentiate between bread baked with cassava flour and the one baked with only wheat flour, but that programme was later jettisoned.
“If we must progress in this country, there must be continuity in our policies.
“Nigeria will be earning over N255bn annually if 10 per cent cassava flour is included in bread; Nigerian bakers are even capable of increasing the percentage of cassava flour in bread to 20 per cent.
“Then, we will be talking of generating about N450bn annually, which will be added to our Gross Domestic Product if this initiative is revived.”
Additionally, he lamented that the price of wheat was currently high adding that the addition of cassava flour to the wheat flour would reduce the cost of flour production and bread production by extension.
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