The Special Adviser to the President on National Social Welfare Programme, Maryam Uwais, on Monday said the federal government feeds pupils with 6 million eggs and 594 cows weekly under its Home Grown School feeding programme.
Mrs Uwais disclosed this in Abuja, when she received a delegation from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) on a study tour of Nigeria to learn from the social intervention programmes in the country.
She noted that 9 million children are currently being fed under the programme in 26 states as a way of encouraging schools enrolment.
She noted further that the programme had created a value chain in the agricultural sector and had also led to the employment of Nigerians thereby creating a market for agriculture.
“Presently, each child eats at least an egg in a day, adding up to 6.8 million eggs being consumed weekly by children under the programme in just 26 states.
“So, the poultry farmers are now doing so much to provide eggs for the schools because every meal is a balanced diet and every child must have at least one egg.
“We need to slaughter 594 cows every week for the pupils and 83 metric tonnes of fish is consumed weekly in just 26 states and more states are coming on board.
“Farmers are growing and requesting for rice meals now because they are saying I was growing 20 bags but because of the programme, I now provide more so I need a rice mill.’’
Mrs Uwais said that farmers were now calling on the government to support them to engage in mechanised farming.
She added that the programme was helping the agricultural sector, by providing markets while women were also being employed as cooks and they in turn employ others.
“The cooks are employing people to wash and serve in classrooms so imagine a child being fed and the cook is the mother while the father is a farmer that provides the foodstuff,” she said.