NIGERIA – Olam Food Ingredients (Ofi), a leading cashew manufacturing company in Kwara State, has reaffirmed its commitment to improving the well-being of farmers and communities in its supply chain.

Rajeesh Neelanjeri, the General Manager of Ofi, made the declaration during the inauguration of a block of six ultra-modern toilets at the Ansarul Islam Community School in Aboto-Oja, Asa local government area of Kwara State.

Represented by Idris Ajibade, the company’s manager, Neelanjeri emphasized that the donation of these facilities reflects Ofi’s genuine concern for the general welfare of farmers in the region.

“Through consistent partnerships, we work with communities to help meet health and nutrition needs throughout the year,” Neelanjeri stated.

“This is in line with our sustainability goals and the cashew trail target, which is reflected in the slogan ‘Promoting good health and wellbeing through the provision of clean water and implementation of proper sanitary conditions.”

Earlier this year, Olam Food Ingredients reiterated its commitment to the continuous improvement of the well-being of cashew farmers and partner communities in the region.

Rajeesh Neelanjeri addressed this commitment at the Annual Cashew Farmers Meeting held in Ilorin. The meeting, attended by 15 cashew farmers’ groups from communities in Kwara and Oyo States, included sensitization activities focused on enhancing production and harvesting practices.

Neelanjeri highlighted the various measures taken by the company to support economic growth among farmers, such as training in Good Agriculture Practices (GAP), providing pre-season financing, distributing farming equipment, and engaging in social and community programs.

In addition, Kabiru Mohammed, the Director of Agriculture at the Kwara Ministry of Agriculture, delivering a speech on “Improvement in Cashew Farming System in Nigeria emphasized the importance of adopting modern cashew cultivation practices to achieve improved cashew production and foreign exchange earnings.

He commended Ofi for its efforts in Rural Agrarian Infrastructural Development programs, noting that these initiatives had led to positive changes in the local community and the cashew industry as a whole.

He further praised the annual cashew farmers’ meeting for its contributions to enhancing cashew production and the well-being of farmers at all levels.

In May, farmers in Kwara State called for greater collaboration between processing industries and farmers to boost the cashew business.

The call coincided with the commencement of operations of a newly established multimillion-naira cashew processing plant, Annie Glidden Commodities (AG) Nigeria Limited, located in Eiyenkorin, Kwara State.

The Chairman of the Cashew Growers Association of Nigeria in Kwara State, Alabi Tunde, welcomed the new development, urging the new plant’s owners to cooperate with all stakeholders in the value chain and ensure the careful selection of seed sources.