The Vice-Chancellor, Professor Kolawole Salako has said that the practice of Agriculture has gone beyond the use of cutlasses and hoes to the application of technology and value addition.
The Vice-Chancellor said this while delivering the opening address at the 42nd Conference and Annual General Meeting of the Nigerian Institute of Food Science and Technology (NIFST) held at the Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library (OOPL), Abeokuta.
According to Professor Salako, “Agriculture is a big business, where we can get our youths employed”, calling on the government to have the political will to promote and encourage farmers and researchers in Agriculture to do more.
He noted that FUNAAB as an Institution is making impact on food production and food security, an impact which can only be visible if there is a genuine market, he added.
Professor Salako also frowned at the belief that goods produced locally are not good enough, noting that such belief is a deliberate act of killing the market, which amounts to killing the people .
The Vice-Chancellor used the opportunity to inform the audience that FUNAAB started and had, over the years, been involved in the production of the odourless Fufu, FUNAAB Palm-wine, FUNAAB Garri, Cashew-nut, FUNAAB Bread, among others.
He thanked NIFST for the crop of Scientists associated with it, and their efforts towards food production in the country.
With reference to the duo of the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Development), Professor Lateef Sanni and the Director, Grants Management, Professor Kolawole Adebayo on Cassava: Adding Value for Africa (C:AVA) project, the Vice-Chancellor stressed that accountability and credibility matter if scientists get grants.
He said that the aforementioned had been responsible and productive in the grants they were entrusted with, while he tasked upcoming scientists to emulate them, and not see any grant they win as free money.
Earlier, delivering the welcome address, NIFST National President, Dr. Dahiru Adamu welcomed members to the 42nd Conference and Annual General Meeting of the Institute, laying emphasis on the theme “Innovations in Food Science and Technology for Sustainable Economic Growth,” as timely in the history of NIFST.
Dr. Adamu rated FUNAAB’s role in NIFST as unparalleled. He said, “FUNAAB has the most active members of NIFSTers,” and so, commended and encouraged the drive in FUNAAB.
The President promised that the Institute is determined to forge ahead in its mandate and thanked members of the Institute for their faith in NIFST.
He revealed that NIFST is not resting on its oars, as the Institute is growing in its efforts towards Industry Linkage.
Above all, he appreciated all stakeholders who had played a role towards the success of the Conference, most especially, the Ogun State Government, the Alake and Paramount Ruler of Egbaland, Oba Adedotun Aremu Gbadebo, Okukenu IV, FUNAAB, and C:AVA, most especially for its continuous role of opening opportunities for farmers, among others who had contributed to the successful hosting of the NIFST Conference.
The peak of the event was the conferment of Fellowship of the Institute on outstanding members who had over the years distinguished themselves in advancing the Institute.