The Federal Government has tasked poultry farmers on the need to produce, process and market hygienic poultry products in the country.
The Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (FMARD), Dr Ernest Umakhihi, gave the charge while inaugurating and handing over a modern live bird market built by the Federal Government to Delta State Government at Ibusa, in the state.
Umakhihi, represented by the State Coordinator, FMARD, Mr John Onovroke, delivered the project through Mr Ben Agamah, Permanent Secretary, State Ministry of Agriculture and Natural Resources at the Delta State Agricultural and Rural Development Authority (DARDA), Ibusa, the project site.
According to Umakhihi, Delta is first among the five approved states; Jigawa, Sokoto, Ebonyi and Benue, to be benefit in the Federal Government live bird market project.
“It is worthy to note that the live bird market project was approved to be constructed in five states across the 36 states of the federation and Delta is one of the lucky states to benefit.
”The concept of this project is to provide conducive, healthy and environmental friendly facility for sales and processing of poultry birds for consumption.
“This project is basically initiated to improve the provision of quality animal healthcare delivery services to livestock and pastoralist in the state”, he said.
He noted that the project would in addition improve quality healthcare delivery services to farmers as well as improve quality of processing poultry meat for consumption and create employment across the poultry value chain.
Umakhihi, while handing over the project, appealed to the state government to put it to good and effective use to encourage the Federal Government to deliver more agricultural development projects in the state.
Receiving the project, Mr Ben Agamah, Permanent Secretary, Delta State Ministry of Agriculture and Natural Resources (MANR), assured that the facility would be put into effective use.
Agamah, represented by Dr Austin Ojogbo, Director, Veterinary Services Department, MANR, thanked the Federal Government for the project, adding that it was the first of its kind in Delta.
According to Agamah, the facility will serve as a model for poultry processors and a surveillance to produce wholesome and hygienic poultry products for Nigerians.
“This is the first of its kind in the state and the state government will look towards replicating this in other parts of the state. The project has been handed over to the MANR and it is ready to take off effectively.
Earlier, in his opening remarks, Dr Austin Ojogbo, Director, Veterinary Services Department, MANR, represented by Dr Edmund Orioko, deputy director in the ministry, said the project would bring poultry sellers and buyers together to ensure standards.
According to him, the market is a welcome development that will avail farmers to buy and process birds free from diseases.
He thanks the Federal Government for citing the project in Delta, adding that the market would be put into immediate use.
On his part, Mr Anthony Odogwu, a poultry farmer, lauded the Federal and the state governments for providing the facility to enhance hygiene in the processing of poultry.
He promised that his association would utilise the facility to process and market their products.
The Newswriter’s source reports that the facility has all the necessary chambers plus a borehole for clean water supply to enhance hygienic environment for poultry processing businesses in the state.