LAGOS, NIGERIA — Bühler is partnering with the Nigerian government in a project to boost rice production across the country.

The project started in 2017 with an agreement for the acquisition of a rice mill in Imota and eight smaller mills, funded by the federal government.

Currently one of the eight mills has been commissioned.

The current drive to invest in rice mills across Nigeria is supported by solutions from Bühler Nigeria. The global Swiss family business has had a presence in Nigeria for more than 50 years and has established itself as the key technology provider in the Nigerian government’s efforts to enhance rice production and processing to meet international standards.

“We are the ideal partner to assist the government with its food security initiatives by introducing the latest trends and technology to Nigeria in order to increase productivity and efficiency in the food sector,” said Manuel Murrenhoff, managing director Bühler Nigeria.

The partnership with Bühler is illustrated by the fully automated Imota rice mill, inaugurated by Muhammadu Buhari, president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, in January. Said to be the largest rice production facility in sub-Saharan Africa, and with an annual production of about 2.5 million 50 kg bags, it is set to revolutionize the rice industry in the country, said Iyore Amadasun, sales and channel business manager Bühler Nigeria.

“At full production capacity, it will reduce the price of rice, increase local capacity and ultimately improve Nigeria’s trade balance,” Murrenhoff said.

Nigeria’s population — the sixth largest in the world — is set to surpass that of the United States and be one of the top three countries by 2050. This means the current population of 216 million is expected to reach 401 million by 2050 and peak at 732 million by 2100.

Feeding this growing population sustainably and efficiently presents a challenge for the Nigerian government and Bühler is committed to supporting the nation’s goal of achieving food independence through the provision of reliable food processing technology.

In August 2022, Bühler Nigeria hosted its first customer experience day with the theme of “Thriving through Collaboration.” Murrenhoff’s keynote address on the topic “Africa on the Rise — Feeding the Continent of Possibilities” identified Bühler Nigeria’s support for the country in its quest for food security, including the construction of a grain processing innovation center in Kano.

“By supporting food producers in Nigeria with technical solutions and a full spectrum of services, we are helping Nigeria to gain food independence and improve food security,” Murrenhoff said.

Through investment in new technology, partnerships, innovation and education, Bühler Nigeria can create a more sustainable future for all.