Flour Mills of Nigeria PLC is set to commission a 50 Billion Naira Sugar production facility. Flour Mills of Nigeria is an Agribusiness company that has been feeding the nation and creating jobs since 1960. They are also one of the leading Animal feed manufacturers in Nigeria since 1968. FMN is also a logistics player when you consider the supply chain from the animal farm to the dining table.
FMN has spent five years building a massive N50 billion sugar production facility in Mokwa, Niger state. It’s called the Sunti Golden Sugar Estate (SGSE) and it’s a wholly owned subsidiary of Flour Mills of Nigeria. The sugar estate is over 17,000 hectares of farmland with a sugar mill that processes 4,500 metric tons of sugar cane per day. At full capacity, it will produce 100,000 tons of sugar annually from the facility. It will be commissioned on March 15th.
According to the National Sugar Development Council (NSDC), consumption of sugar in Nigeria is about 1.5 million tons (2016 data) a year. Sadly, Nigeria only produces about 25,000 tons. The deficit of 1.475 million tons has to be covered by importation from other countries and that is a largely expensive. Last year, the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria said we spend about $100 million a year importing sugar. So being able to get to a point where Nigeria is self-sufficient in sugar production would mean big savings in foreign exchange.
Saving foreign exchange for Nigeria is one advantage, but a bigger advantage for Niger state is jobs for the locals. The farm at peak production will provide direct employment for about 10,000 people yearly, and impact up to 50,000 people indirectly, including 3,000 small-scale out growers who will be cultivating sugarcane to feed the mill.
The estate is impacting the 28 local communities in the vicinity of the production facility in Mokwa; with them taking advantage of a new 30-kilometer road, plus expansive road networks that provide a variety of access routes to the homes of the indigenes. Drains, culverts, and flood-protection walls have also been constructed.
The FMN Group’s mantra, “Feeding the Nation, Every day,” is at the heart of the company’s strategic decisions on what they produce, how and where factories are set up, the level of care that is put into products, and how they interact with host communities and the wider environment.
The commissioning of the Sunti Golden Sugar Estate on March 15th will be the first step towards a collective dream of agricultural progress for all in Nigeria.
Credit: Olori Supergal.