… as shoppers get 20% discount on prices of commodities
In a renewed effort to ensure market linkage for farmers in rural communities, the Edo State Government has reopened the monthly market with a charge to women to add value to their farm produce so they can command higher prices.
Commissioner for Women Affairs and Social Development, Hon. Magdalene Ohenhen, made the call at the relaunch of the Edo Monthly Market at Urhokpota Hall, in Oredo Local Government Area of Edo State.
Some of the products exhibited at the market were local rice, sour garri, packaged yam and plantain flour, snails, bush meat, dried fish, locust beans, pigeon pea, vegetables, local soaps, palm oil, raw and fried groundnuts, and tubers of yam.
A mudu of white garri, 4 kilograms of local rice, a bunch of plantain and bottle of groundnut which sell for N500, N1300, N700 and N800 respectively at major markets in Benin City, were sold for N300, N1, 000, N500 and N500 respectively.
After inspecting the different food items brought at the market, Ohenhen said the essence of the monthly market was to encourage more women to go into production and processing of farm produce which would be sold at competitive prices.
“The monthly market was introduced in the previous administration but did not hold after some time. We decided to revive it and make it bigger and better,” she said.
Noting that the state government is committed to sustaining the market, she said, “We are promoting value addition in our local produce so that we can create an export market. Before now, we had carried out advocacy at the different local government councils on the need for women to be empowered and gainfully involved in business ventures.”
She said the monthly market is an avenue to showcase what women are producing locally, noting that it was encouraging that some women have started packaging their produce to attract higher prices.
According to her, “From what we have seen today, the women are interested in selling and adding value to their farm produce. Packaged yam and plantain flour made in Esan West Local Government Area can be found in the market and we want more women to be involved in value addition.”
She said a permanent site would be secured in Benin City, the state capital, where the monthly market would be held.
Mrs. Mary Edokpa, from Esan Central LGA commended the state government for the initiative, saying it would promote resourcefulness and entrepreneurship.
“Everything brought from my LGA to the market was sold at very affordable prices and we look forward to attending the next monthly market,” she said.