Butchers and meat sellers, who travel to Northern parts of the country to get live cattle and goats, may not go far any more, as there is a ready market in Osun State, set to dominate the supply of beef in the Southwest.
This initiative, which forms part of the state government’s policies on agriculture is located at Oloba Farm Settlement, Iwo, where 1,500 hectares of land has been acquired, and a 78 hectares cattle ranch established for the fattening of cattle and goats.
O-Beef, as the programme is called, would see the state dominate the supply of beef to larger markets in Oyo, Lagos and other parts of the southwest states. The ranch has the capacity of supplying 10,000 cattle, amongst other animals to the market.
Owned by the state, but managed by Mr. Sola Omidiran, who took over the place, a year ago, the focus of the cattle hub is to make it a place where people can buy cattle without going outside the region.
Recall that the state government sent 40 youths to Germany to acquire modern Agricultural techniques in 2015. Another set of 2,806 Osun Youth Empowerment Scheme (OYES), cadets were also trained in modern agriculture practices at the OREAP Youth Academy, Odua farmers Academy, and Leventis foundation.
Omidiran disclosed that five of the youths sent to Germany were sent to th rear more animals.
One of the German Trainees, now resident at the Ranch, Olumide Ojo, said he and other trainees are in high spirit, as they have begun the first batch of 45days goat-fattening beef productione farm to practicalise what they were taught and to also garner more experience in breeding of animals, adding that through the GEMS 4 project, the state will also train 2,000 farmers, to expand the scope of the farm to help them.
Another trainee, Kairat Bello, told The Guardian that she learnt about fattening of animals, feed formulation and keeping animals happy, noting that if the project leaves up to its billing, it is capable of making the state a cattle hub in the country.
The Guardian learnt other trainees who arrived from German in 2016 are also breeding pigs, using modern techniques at Leventis foundation fattening centre, Ilesa.