Nigeria loses between 55 percent and 72 percent of its cultivated fresh produce (fruits and vegetables) before they get to the market, a recent report revealed.
According to the International Trade Centre (ITC) Nigeria’s export of vegetables constitutes only three percent of the world’s import of perishables.
The Figure, the ITC indicated, has remained low despite Nigeria’s potential to earn high from trading veggies.
It was further reported that India remains the largest importer of Nigeria’s edible vegetables importing about 47.91 percent of the edible veggies, tuber and roots.
Also, due to demands for fruits and vegetables in the European market, the Italian Trade Agency (ITA), wooed the Nigerian agriculture produce exporters early this year on trading terms
The ITA is a governmental agency that supports the business development, partnerships and collaborations between Italian companies and their local counterparts and launched the first E-Lab Innova in Nigeria in April
In his opening remark during the lunch, the Italian Trade Agency Director for West Africa, Dr. Alessandro Gerbino said that Nigeria remains a strategic point for engagement between the agency and other countries across West Africa.
Gerbino said, “The E-Lab Innova holds prospects for Nigerian companies to be imparted on the knowledge and technicalities of their counterparts abroad whilst also paving the way for collaborations between Italian and Nigerian agribusinesses”
On his part, ICE Faculty Trainer, Enrico Turino, said Nigerian produce exporters have opportunities to penetrate the European market with vegetables, gingers, avocados, and others.
In his words, “There is market asking for more fruits and vegetables because the European consumes everything on the table, not only when it is available that is why I gave example of the wintertime.
“If you don’t produce the right variety of fruit or vegetable you cannot enter the market, and it is very important to get this information, in other words, this source of information is important for the Nigerian producer, and also to visit supermarkets and wholesale markets, technology producers in Europe, especially Italy. Nigerian farmers should take information from the Innova Gap Certification” Turino added.