By Gabriel Olawale
The Managing Director of Fairtrade Messe, Mr Paul Maerz has called for the proliferation of new technologies across the agriculture value chain to drive production and reduce food loss.
Speaking ahead of the 7th edition of the agro-food and plastprintpack exhibition and conference slated for 22nd to 24th in Lagos, Maerz said that Nigeria with Africa’s biggest economy has seen its food production increase in recent years owing to the government’s renewed focus on agriculture, but not at the same pace as its population.
He pointed out that for Nigeria to leapfrog to the fourth industrial revolution in agriculture and ensure it feeds its rapidly growing population, technologies must be at the centre.
“Fairtrade Messe, a German trade show specialist in collaboration with the Organization for Technology Advancement of Cold Chain in West Africa, OTACCWA is committed towards driving conversation around adopting new technologies and innovation through the exhibition.
“The forthcoming exhibition and conference alongside the 4th West Africa Cold Chain Summit and Exhibition will offer a networking opportunity for international and local industry players to gather to find solutions and share best practices for managing the complexities of the perishable food system and pharmaceutical supply chain while adopting new technologies and innovation.
He revealed that the exhibition will be complemented by a top-level three-day conference featuring more than 40 Nigerian and European Experts.
Corroborating his views, President of OTACCWA, Alexander Isong disclosed that exhibitors from more than 14 countries will showcase adapted technologies and solutions for the Nigerian and West African market towards more than 2,000 specialized trade visitors in the fields of agriculture, food processing, ingredients, plastics, printing and packaging, and cold chain.
Isong said the partnership with Fairtrade was a synergy of purpose because preservation, transportation, and storage go hand in hand with agro-food and packaging, especially in an environment like Nigeria with large post-harvest losses.
He said last year’s exhibition and conference was a great success as they look forward to better collaboration this year.