Senegal has to be capable of producing the quantity of rice necessary for the consumption of its population within the next two years. President Macky Sall and his government launched on Saturday, 28th February a campaign to incite the Senegalese to use the local rice.
Rice occupies an important place in food supply of the Senegalese. This foodstuff is however greatly imported from Asia. The second importer in Africa behind Ivory Coast, the gross imports of the country reached 1 113 000 tons in 2005.
According to the pressafrik.com site, the national rice offer in Senegal is about 250 thousand tons among which 75 % come from the Senegal River Valley (VFS). The effective marketing of the local production is around 50 % of this offer, which is 125 thousand tons. The demand is estimated at about 1 million tons. There is thus a gap of about 875 thousand tons.
For the Senegalese Minister for Agriculture, a good communications strategy is needed to convince the population to consume the local products. « We have to make the populations understand that what we cultivate can be better than what we import. The problem of using the local products cannot be decreed, it is necessary to find strategies to achieve it« , declared Papa Abdoulaye Sarr in June 2014.
Original text by: Roger ADZAFO