Ekiti set to lead Africa in mass snail production
By Samuel Ogunsona
The Ekiti State Government is set to lead Africa as the continent’s hub of large scale commercial production of snail.
The global trade of snails is worth 12billion dollars, experts told Irohinoodua on Sunday.
On Tuesday, the State Governor, Dr Fayode Fayemi will declare open the Farmkonnect Egbeja Snail Village billed to produce millions of snails for local and international market.
According to the State Commissioner for Agriculture and Food Security, Olabode Adetoyi the Governor will commission the ultra modern N5 Billion Naira Snail project with stocking capacity of 2 million snails per cycle.
Experts said the project is the first of its kind in Ekiti State and Nigeria
Adetoyi said the project is the second biggest snail farm in Africa.
“This Agric project will attract 3000 employment. All State Executive Council , Officials and friends of Ekiti State Government are cordially invited” he said in a release made available to Irohinoodua on Saturday.
The farming of snail is called heliciculture. It takes between.10 to 30 days for the tiny eggs to hatch releasing multiple snails about 4 mm long but could grow up to 10 mm per month.
In about half a year, the Achatina fulica is about 35 mm long and ready for reproduction
Sometimes the sexual maturity takes 6 to 16 months, depending on diet which should include Calcium.
The snail international market booms with the share of export in total global output being about 80% in 2007-2016.
Experts say trade boom is fueled by acccess to ready made market.
France, Germany and Portugal are some of the leading European countries where snails are consumed
Portugal for instance is the world’s biggest consumer of snails with some 30,000 tonnes consumed annually
Irohinoodua sources from Touchstone revealed that In 2014, the value of global consumption of snails was estimated around 450.000 tons worth some12 billion dollars.