Worried over the high level of food lost to poor handling, procurement processes and effective distribution of produce from farm to table, leading agri-tech company, Vendease has donated hundreds of high quality food crates to food traders at the Lagos international food market, Mile 12 International Market.
Indeed, up to 30-40 per cent post-harvest losses occur during the procurement, transportation and distribution of produce from farms to consumers, hence the need for the private and public sectors to increase investments and drive initiatives that will address this issue cannot be overemphasised.
According to the company, the donations were part of its continued efforts to tackle food wastages as it has become a matter of international concern with drastic effects on the economy, environment and collective food security.
Vendease added that the initiative also aligns with its disposition to fulfill the United Nations’ SDG Goal 12, which is responsible consumption and Production–geared towards eco-friendly production methods and reducing the amount of food waste by 2030.
The Chief Executive Officer, Vendease, Mr. Tunde Kara, reaffirmed the company’s commitment to supporting initiatives aimed at expediting growth and development of the Nigerian food industry whilst driving transformation in the nation’s agricultural value chain.
According to Kara, the provision of plastic crates will substitute for raffia baskets, which he said contributes to the high volume of food wastages.
“As a responsible organisation and key player in the Nigerian food industry, Vendease continually seeks avenues to improve effectiveness and efficiency of the food value chain; hence, this initiative. The World Food Day is a significant day for us as it is behooves stakeholders to make concerted efforts to contribute to the actualization of food security, which will drive socio-economic development.
“Reports show Nigeria loses at least N3.7 trillion to food wastage and poor cold chain logistics yearly, a harrowing figure indeed. It is considering this that we have chosen to commemorate this year’s World Food Day by donating hundreds of plastic crates to traders here in Mile 12, as this will not only help curb food wastage but also mitigate its devastating effects on the economy,” he stated.
The Vice Chairman; Mile 12 International Market, Tomato section, Mr. Abdullahi Babanyaya, lauded the initiative, reckoning it as a charitable act which will impact their bottom line.
“We are happy to work together with Vendease and will continue to support their efforts in transforming the food value chain in Nigeria,” he said.