A snail farmer, Mr Sunday Ido, on Thursday advised Nigerians to consume snail meat as a better alternative for protein following the ban on imported frozen chicken.
Ido, the CEO of Real Snails in Calabar, gave the advise in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Thursday in Lagos.
He said following the closure of borders, Nigerians could now look inward for other sources of protein other than imported frozen poultry.
“With the closure of the border and ban on imported frozen chicken, my advice to Nigerians is to go for alternative protein sources within the country.
“In Nigeria, we have numerous protein options and snails happen to be a good source of protein. There is also periwinkle and other seafood.
“The closure of the border is an opportunity for us to grow and look inward at the agricultural produces that we have.
“Nigerians are already seeing the ban on frozen poultry as an impediment on the availability of protein in their diets.
“Rearing poultry locally may take a while to mature and meet the Nigerian demand but snails are readily available and with the rains, we have them in abundance presently.
“These available snail produce can help alleviate the impact of the ban on frozen foods if Nigerians patronise snail meat,” he told NAN.
Ido also called for local farmers to invest in snail farming to meet the growing demand of snail meat in the country.
“I advise more farmers to embark on snail farming given the opportunity as the available snail farmers cannot meet the growing the demand.
“Following the ban on imported frozen foods, I have been getting calls to organise trainings for intending snail farmers.
“It is an opportunity for most people to come into the snail business.
“We are even getting calls to export Nigerian snails abroad but I believe we should first build capacity to satisfy the Nigerian demand before considering the export option.
“There was a recent call from Juvana Farms, one of Nigeria’s largest snail farm that snail product are not enough to cater for Nigerians demand.
“For such a large scale farm to make such a call, it implies that we need more snail farmers in the country.
“The market is there so anybody coming into the snail trade will flourish, especially when it is embarked on with an entrepreneurial drive.
“Young graduate seeking employment should not just wait for a white collar job but can embark on lucrative snail farming,” Ido said.