The Chairman of the Technical Committee on Nigerian Yam Export Programme, Mr Simon Irtwange,has encouraged yam farmers to form Cooperative Societies, so as to obtain support from various groups.
Irtwang said this in an interview with the newsmen in Lagos.
According to him, Yam Cooperative Societies will enable farmers to get the benefits of various support groups and ease some problems surrounding Nigerian yam export.
“The Ikorodu Light Terminal has been given to us and we want to have a Yam Park House there.
“It will be a one-stop-shop where farmers bring the yams for export physically to the park and do the cleaning and packaging there.
“This will be done under the supervision of the regulatory agencies.
“It is also important to have cooperative societies that will bring their already packaged yams to the terminal for inspection and shipment, as it is being done in Ghana.
“That is why the Committee is encouraging yam farmers to form cooperative societies,’’ .
Irtwang said that the problem with packaging outside the terminal was that the Customs would want to open the packages and see what was packaged for export.
He said the Quarantine Desk would also want to open the package to see the quality of what was being exported.
The Technical Chairman added that the Standards Organisations of Nigeria (SON) would also want to open the packages and see the yams to be exported, to ensure that the required standards for export were met.
Irtwang emphasised on the registration of Women Yam Farmer’s Cooperative Societies and Youth’s Yam Farmer’s Cooperative Societies, adding that the efforts would help to strengthen the cooperatives.
According to him, the Committee is already working towards it and the women and youth farmers cooperative society are expected to play a key role in the yam value chain.