Osun sets stage for massive rice production
The Osun State government is on the verge of becoming the hub for rice production in the Southwest, with its recent move to focus on rice cultivation, as part of its agricultural policies.
The governor, Rauf Aregbesola, his deputy, Mrs. Grace Titilayo Laoye-Tomori, and other members of his team recently visited one of the major rice farms collaborating with the state government to produce Ofada Osun Rice.
If the partnership sails through, it is expected to break the country’s reliance on imported rice, generate more income for the state and also create job opportunities for the populace of the state, as people from every part of the country would be coming into the state Osun Rice.
The Guardian’s visit to one of the farms in Songbe borders, near Ogbagba in Iwo area of the state, attested to the drive. Though the rice has just been harvested, the plan is to cultivate 450 hectares mainly for rice in the next three weeks, for the new planting season.
The Guardian learnt that the move is part of the holistic agricultural policy of the state, which has placed it on the green map of the Southwest within the space of six years; making it one of the major suppliers of agricultural produce to markets in Lagos and other South Western states.
Executive Chairman of ajogbe group, Bosoye Olalere, who is partnering the state, said the target for the new planting season is to do a lot more than last year, noting that additional land has been acquired to achieve the dream.
While disclosing that youth, under the state modern agriculture techniques would be integrated into the system, where they would be given acres of land to cultivate and manage, he added that 35 workers are on the pay roll of the farm, noting that during harvest ad-hoc staff would be employed, as another way of creating employment for the people.
“The idea of the farm is to run an integrated farming system. There is a plan to build the processing plant, which is the second phase of the project for processing of rice paddy.