Money Matters: Investing In Corn For Backward Integration

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Following Nigeria’s recent economic recession, business emphasis has been shifted from the oil sector to other sectors with the aim of diversifying the economy.

Evidence of this shift of emphasis is the government’s increased efforts to make the agricultural sector more productive and competitive through various loans, grants and programmes.

Meanwhile, Nigerian companies, especially those in the manufacturing sector, are weathering the storm posed by a myriad of macroeconomic challenges with attendant pressure on their limited resources and attempt to cripple their move towards enhanced capacity utilization.

For instance, Nestle Nigeria Plc has expanded its backward integration program across all value chains. The Company has continued to invest in backward integration projects as a strategy to diversify and add more value to both its shareholders and the Nigerian economy.

So, the Company through its Golden Morn brand, has shown a commitment to improve youth participation in agriculture through the training of local farmers and the support of young entrepreneurs in the agricultural sector.

Over the years, Golden Morn has worked with local farmers who supply the homegrown maize and soya beans used in the production of the nutritious family cereal.

With 100 per cent of the grains sourced locally, Golden Morn is not only sustaining Nestle’s local sourcing ambition, but is also impacting the local economy positively by providing a sustainable means of livelihood for the farmers and other players across the value chain.

Raising the next generation of farmers and ‘agripreneurs’ is critical, not just for ensuring the availability of grains for meeting Golden Morn’s needs, but also for building thriving communities and sustained economic advancement.

Therefore, in October 2021, the brand launched Golden Morn Agripreneurship Series in collaboration with The Enterprise Development Centre of the Pan Atlantic University to promote youth participation in the agricultural sector through training and provision of grants for the most promising agriculture business proposals by the beneficiaries. The beneficiaries are exposed to different aspects of the agricultural value chain and are provided with seedlings and mentorship to help them succeed as farmers post training.

How To Apply

One must be an entrepreneur from the agricultural sector (grain)

He or she must be within the age of 18 to 35

Nestle Nigeria’s Corporate Communications and Public Affairs manager, Victoria Uwadoka, said, “As a force for good, our brands with purpose help to drive societal progress by Creating Shared Value across their value chain. This way, Nestle is driving impact at scale across critical socio-economic sectors including agriculture to build a sustainable mutually beneficial ecosystem.”

“The Golden Morn Agripreneurship Series seek to train and provide support to entrepreneurs in the agricultural sector in order to promote sustainable food systems in Nigeria. Over the years, the brand has consistently supported the growth of a thriving ecosystem of farmers, and is now attracting and equipping young agripreneurs, who will ensure continuity from the current generation. Equipping these future farmers will ensure continuous supply of high-quality grains to Nestlé while contributing towards ensuring nutrition and food security to cater to our rapidly growing population estimated to reach 400 million by 2050.”

Speaking at the opening session of the fourth season, Category & Marketing manager Dairy, Nestle Nigeria, Ifeanyichukwu Orabuche, said, “As a brand, we are excited to further extend investment towards creating value for young agripreneurs aged 18 to 35 years, who are already participating in or are interested in the grains value chain. Through the series, we aim to positively impact on the local economy by growing agribusinesses to create job opportunities for young Nigerians. Beyond the training and mentoring opportunity, the series provides, beneficiaries who excel during the training also stand a chance to win seed funding for their businesses.”

Since the commencement of the Golden Morn Agripreneurship webinars, over 200 youths have benefitted from the opportunity provided by the brand with seven of them receiving a total of 3.5 million Naira to scale their businesses.

Nestlé Golden Morn is an iconic brand from the stable of Nestlé, the good food, good life company, committed to unlocking the power of food to enhance quality of life for everyone today and for generations to come. Developed in Nigeria in 1986, the homegrown brand has evolved into an iconic brand, loved and trusted by Nigerian families.

Source: Leadership