Former President Olusegun Obasanjo has disclosed that avocado farming could replace oil in Nigeria in terms of revenue generation.
According to Obasanjo, Nigeria could be the largest producer of the avocado crop by 2030 with the enthusiasm of the country’s farmers.
The ex-President said this on Monday while receiving members of the Avocado Society of Nigeria (ASN) at his Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library (OOPL) Penthouse residence in Abeokuta on Monday.
The Owu-born elder statesman disclosed that Nigeria possessed all it required to take over East African countries in avocado crop planting.
In a statement made available to newsmen by his Special Assistant on Media, Kehinde Akinyemi, the former President expressed his desire for Nigeria to embrace avocado farming.
“I want to see Nigeria becoming one of, if not the leading avocado producer in Africa.”
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He opined that avocado is a unique and very lucrative crop, adding that it could be taken as a business or as a hobby, by having a plantation, or just a few trees in the compound.
“Those of us who have been privileged to know about Avocado production must not hold the information to ourselves. In my simple opinion, this is the new oil of Nigeria, if it is effectively tapped into,” Obasanjo noted.
Speaking further, Obasanjo informed that avocado is a very healthy fruit with numerous benefits.
He mentioned that the oil, as well as the pulp from the fruit, can be used by cosmetic, pharmaceutical and therapeutic companies, adding that “a bit of avocado every day keeps the doctor away.”
While appreciating the association, the octogenarian assured them of his total commitment as the grand patron.
Meanwhile, the CEO of the Avocado Society, Amb Sola Bunmi Adeniyi, extolled the efforts of the ex-President in promoting agriculture in Nigeria and Africa at large.
Adeniyi added that “the multi-million naira investment in Avocado by the Grand Patron clearly shows that he is an unrepentant lover and advocate of agriculture.”