The Federal Government’s economic diversification agenda is set to receive a boost with the development of new standards for grinding plate, driving plate and grinding machine which are already in use widely in Nigeria.
The Director General, Standards Organisation of Nigeria, Osita Aboloma stated this at the opening of a technical committee meeting in Lagos to elaborate standards for grinding plates, driving plates and grinding machine respectively.
Represented by Mrs. Chinyere Egwuonwu, Acting Director, Standards Development, the SON Chief Executive stated that processing agricultural products is a procedure that transforms raw food materials into marketable or consumable food products for end users.
This according to him, is typically a mechanized process that utilizes mixing, grinding, chopping, separating and emulsifying equipment in the production.
He stated further that there has been an upsurge in local design and manufacture of these agricultural machinery and equipment which in turn has caused an increase in variations in the quality of materials used in manufacturing or fabricating such machines.
Mr. Aboloma said the elaboration of the standards for agricultural food processing equipment and machinery is therefore to address the need for assuring the quality of materials to ensure uniformity in specifications and optimize end products in support of the government’s economic diversification program.
“The development and promotion of these standards will assure the quality of equipment, service parts and their outputs and add greater impetus to the agricultural sector’s contribution to food safety in Nigeria, while also enhancing its foreign exchange earning capacity, he said.
The SON DG observed that standardization activities such as these are increasingly becoming essential for business and growth, as they encourage and support MSMEs and large industries in a developing economy such as ours.
When concluded, approved and published, the standards tor agricultural machinery and equipment will ensure that agricultural processes and products conform to standards and quality requirements to meet the needs of the end users, guarantee value for money for consumers and profits for businesses, he said.
He therefore advised members of the Technical Committee to see the assignment as a call to national duty and use their wealth of experience and expertise from the various sectors to publish standards on grinding machines, grinding plates and driving plates that will not only guarantee quality products in Nigeria but also quality exports that will be acceptable worldwide.
Responding, Chairman of the Technical Committee, Engineer Ose Ochoga of the Council for the Regulation of Engineering in Nigeria (COREN) thanked SON and the stakeholders for the confidence reposed him.
He promised to apply the basic rules in standards elaboration and urged the members to be professional, firm but flexible during deliberations in order to achieve consensus on the standards that would make their products acceptable world-wide.
Membership of the technical committee was drawn from agricultural associations, processors, machinery and equipment fabricators, research and tertiary institutions and regulatory agencies, with SON providing the secretariat support.