The Federal Government of Nigeria has introduced a comprehensive plan to tackle the rising costs of essential food items with a significant policy shift.

Led by the Minister of Agriculture and Food Security, Abubakar Kyari, these measures include a 150-day duty-free import window for key commodities like maize, husked brown rice, wheat, and cowpeas.

Minister Kyari, in a statement, outlined that these initiatives will be rolled out over the next 180 days. The core strategy involves suspending duties, tariffs, and taxes on the importation of specified food items via land and sea borders.

“As our nation confronts this critical food security challenge, I reiterate President Tinubu’s unwavering commitment to achieving food security and ensuring that no Nigerian goes to bed hungry.

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“My team and I will work swiftly and diligently to actualize these crucial policies, ensuring food security for everyone in the immediate term while continuing our strategies for long-term interventions to address underlying causes and ensure sustainable and resilient food systems in Nigeria.” Minister Kyari stated.

Under the new regulations, imported food products will adhere to a Recommended Retail Price (RRP) framework to ensure affordability and uphold quality standards. Minister Kyari reassured the public that rigorous measures will be enforced to address concerns about the genetic composition and safety of imported foods.

The move is aimed at enhancing the availability of these crucial food staples, stabilizing market prices, and easing financial burdens on consumers.

Additionally, the government plans to import 250,000 metric tons each of wheat and maize, which will be distributed to small-scale processors and millers nationwide. This distribution aims to strengthen local production capacities and bolster food security across the country.

Minister Kyari also detailed supplementary measures, including the establishment of Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) in collaboration with stakeholders, purchasing surplus food stocks to replenish the National Strategic Food Reserve, and intensifying agricultural activities for the upcoming farming season.

He also gave an assurance on the safety of the imported goods, saying, “We understand concerns about the quality of these imports, especially regarding their genetic composition. The government assures that all standards will be maintained to ensure the safety and quality of food items for consumption.”

These steps are part of a broader strategy to fortify nutrition security and build resilient food systems in Nigeria.

Minister Kyari reiterated the administration’s dedication to eradicating hunger and ensuring equitable access to nutritious food for all Nigerians.

The Federal Government remains steadfast in its pursuit of a food-secure nation, where every citizen can access affordable and high-quality food products.

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