The government of Nigeria has signed a multi-million dollar deal with a Nigerian investor, the Blackpace Africa Group, to revamp and develop its potato industry and help to upscale potato production, as well as set up potato processing facilities in the both countries.
The group will build a world-class processing facility, which will process 60,000 tons annually of Irish potatoes into French fries, flakes and crisps in the Plateau State as part of a US $103 million project.
Potato in Africa’s agriculture economy is often considered solely as food substance. Too often the full economic potential of the potato value chain to the region’s economy and importance in contribution toward providing food security in the continent is overlooked.
In the case of Plateau State in Nigeria, it is clear that the economy has not maximised its Potato Value Chain to fully effect stronger economic benefit that could be provided to the country. Nigeria for example produces about 800,000 tons annually from over 550,000 hectares, however the economic value to Plateau state is less than $20m.
BlackPace Africa’s Cros Agro has significant interest and is investing hugely in Africa’s Potato value chain. Currently there’s a joint venture/PPP agreement with the Plateau State government to scale up potato cultivation and processing. An initial investment of $65m USD has been put together and in completion a total of $103m USD would have been invested. This will create a financial boost to Plateau State’s economy and create over 3,000 new jobs.
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