Rice, has grown to become a staple food for most families in Nigeria today. The introduction of the long grain, stone and chaff free local Rice by Ebonyi and Anambra states is gradually making our people forget the polished foreign long grains from Thailand, India and other Asian Countries which hitherto dominated the market.
Today most big restaurants and eateries now patronize the local brands as an alternative to the foreign ones.
Sometime last year, I personally registered my grievances about the way Abia State Government was handling issues concerning Rice Farming and processing. That article was widely circulated and our people showed how disappointed they were with the system for not given Rice production, especially the processing, the necessary attention it deserves.
That is why few days ago, when the Cordinator of Abia State Accelerated Rice Production, Pastor Okechukwu Dike invited us to the Osikapa Abia Rice Mill Centre, Uzuakoli Main Market, Bende LGA, I didn’t think twice about it.
We went and can confidently report that there is indeed a new and improved dimension of Rice Processing in the state today and that the “Osikapa Abia” as it is christened is real.
The pictures accompanying this post are excerpts from that visit.
The mill sits on a very large expanse of land properly fenced with a security post to ensure the safety of the machinery.
An office complex which houses the administration Department, The Warehouse, the Milling, Bagging and weighing section has been completed with a borehole and heavy duty generators.
Production has since started with two mills that has the capacity to churn out 15 tons of polished and stone free rice per days.
According to Pastor Dike, “The Osikapa Abia is a story of steady progress that will get better in the coming days. It is another initiative of Dr. Okezie Ikpeazu, with the target of encouraging our people to embrace Agriculture thereby boosting food production and creating Jobs for Abia Youths…”
“We are calling on Rice Farmers from all over the state to take advantage of this new innovation and bring their Rice for milling. The beauty of this initiative is that we have the capacity now, to buy up the milled Rice from them, at the market price and bag them, to help propagate the Osikapa Abia Brand”.
“We are calling on Abians to patronize and help promote the Abia Rice, now Christened “Osikapa Abia”. We have a distribution van already and waiting for Abians from all works of life to place their orders. People can visit the mill at Uzuakoli to purchase the Rice or call :0813 216 9853″.
The coordinator stated that plans are underway to procure more sophisticated mills to increase the production capacity of the mill as there is enough space and room for improvement and Expansion.
He further thanked Governor Ikpeazu for his efforts geared towards the improvement of Rice Production and Processing in the state.