Sierra Leone — Cassava farmers in Sierra Leone will soon be getting a better return for their produce with the pronouncement for the operation of a cassava processing industry which will cultivate about five to ten hectares of cassava to process biofuel for export, wheat flour and starch.
The industry will work with Addax Bioenergy, a sugarcane-based renewable energy company that has launched a sustainable bioenergy project in Sierra Leone.
The President is expected to give his blessing for the operation of a firm.
The Minister of Agriculture, Prof. Monty Patrick Jones, informed farmers during his tour in the North that the firm is ready to engage farmers in about fifty miles radius and that four districts will benefit greatly.
He revealed that the big cassava processing industry will cultivate about five to ten hectares of cassava and will process it into biofuel for export, wheat flour, starch etc. The Firm, he noted, will work with Addax Bioenergy, which is currently producing ethanol to boost the country’s development.
Prof. Jones admonished farmers to create and effective and efficient farming system that will increase their yield.
“You should intensify and diversify cultivation,” he said and added that only 12% of the land is cultivated in the country.
“We want our farmers to be rich people to contribute to the growth of the economy.
“We don’t want to continue importing rice and vegetable oil to supply our forces, schools and Prisoners,” he said.
Our rice is the best and government is willing to buy from farmers to supply the various sectors,” says the Agriculture Minister.
He challenged farmers that by next planting season locally produced rice should flood the market.
The Farmers promised to work with the Government in ensuring increase in production and productivity.