The National Association of Shea Products of Nigeria (NASPAN) has disclosed plans to kickstart the reforestation of certain reserved areas in Niger State, as one of its efforts to increase the viability of Shea products.
President of the association, Mohammed Ahmed Kontagora disclosed this during a virtual meeting between the National Executive Council and all State coordinators.
The plans were also in response to identified challenges the state coordinators presented earlier.
Some of the challenges as enunciated in a release made available to AgroNigeria include; insecurity, indiscriminate felling of Shea trees, sub-standard processing of Shea butter, as well as other factors inhibiting access to markets.
According to him, a National Campaign and Advocacy to plant ten million trees in ten years at one million per year will also be piloted.
This, he explained, would increase the awareness of the economic benefits of the Shea tree and its derivatives.
AgroNigeria had earlier reported that Minister of Agriculture, Alhaji Sabo Nanono, had pledged to ramp up efforts to scale up the Shea industry.
He assured key players of the government’s efforts to increase the production and export capacity of the industry.
Similarly, Kontagora assured of a new method of Shea processing, in line with the approved guidelines of the Standard Organisation of Nigeria (SON).
This he said, would ensure uniqueness and traceability of Nigerian Shea products, in the international market.
The association would also be collaborating with state governments to implement legislation, and consequently, achieve total development of the sector, the president further stated.
Kontagora however listed some of his feats in the first 100 days of swearing his executive into office.
Some achievements listed include among others, partnership with MAN to sensitise the food and cosmetics industries on the use of shea and the signing of pact with the Nigeria Export Promotion Council, NEPC on training of members.