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#BellaNaijaMCM Emmanuel Maduka of LifePro Food Mills is the Entrepreneur Upscaling the Manufacture of Iru (Locust Beans) in Nigeria

BellaNaija.com

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We use technology to scale-up the production of local food products, to ensure more nutritious meals are accessible and affordable to all Africans.

Our #BellaNaijaMCM this week Emmanuel Maduka is tackling malnutrition in Nigeria and beyond through LifePro Food Mills.

LifePro Food Mills upscales the manufacture of local food products using technology while also empowering of women in rural communities across Africa to supply high quality, semi-processed version of its products.

Recognising the potential of locust bean, popularly known as “Iru” in Nigeria, Emmanuel decided to manufacture his first product – Hiru (Healthy Iru).

Iru, used for seasoning in soups and stews is a cheap source of proteins, fat, fibre, vitamins and contains a large amount of calcium. However, it has previously not been commercialised due to its smell and poor shelf life, which is due to basic local processing methods, such as sun-drying.

Emmanuel and his partner Adebowale Oparinu decided to do something about it. They founded LifePro Food Mills and today, they’re working with women farmers to produce 750 kg of processed bean seeds each month. They currently sell to over 50 outlets – mostly supermarkets – within Nigeria, as well as to UK and US markets.

They are currently working with 20 women in rural areas whom they call ‘Hiru Champions’. The women are trained on hygienic ways to pre-process the bean seeds, which LifePro then buys from them to finalise processing in its factory.

We celebrate Emmanuel for empowering rural women, while harnessing the power of technology to meet agricultural needs and we’re rooting for him.

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