As part of efforts to create job opportunities for its youths and eradicate poverty within the community while contributing its quota to the development, Lanlate community in Ibarapa zone of Oyo State has donated 300,000 hectares to Italian investors.
The 300,000 hectares donated by the Lanlate community is to house a tomato processing factory that would specialise in cultivation, processing and export of tomatoes, tomatoes paste, juice, ketchup, among other tomato-based products.
The factory is being powered by a group of foreign investors from Italy who are investing the sum of N544 million into the Oyo State economy for the purpose of tomato production.
To kick-start its operation, the investors, led by the representative of Fenco food Machinery in Africa, Mr Paolo De Sciscilo, met with the traditional ruler of Lanlate town, Oba Abdul Lateef Olagoke, to deliberate on ways to ensure that the natives benefit from the operation and get support from the people
Oba Olagoke, who expressed delight over the prospect of the project and its effect on the people in the community stated that it will indeed be of long-term benefits to the socioeconomic activities of the town and the state in general and called on the investors not to turn the youths of the state to slaves in the factory.
He further called on the incoming administration in the state led by the governor-elect, Seyi Makinde, to implement strategic policies that would stimulate agribusiness which he said will help attract investments into the state with a view to turning around the fortunes of the state.
De Sciscilo while enumerating what the project will look like stated that the tomato factory would also contain facilities such as healthcare centres, housing for workers, schools and other associated services, adding that the investment would create an estimated 2000 jobs for the people of the state in particular and the Nigerian unemployed population in general.
“The demand for tomato-based products is increasing as consumers continue to learn the health and nutritive values that tomatoes offer. This is a multimillion dollar investment, which will shortly commence as soon all paper work is completed. We hope to increase the local production of fresh tomatoes and tomato products including juice, paste and puree,” De Sciscilo stated.
Credit: Nigerian Tribune