Anambra State Commissioner For Agriculture, Dr Forster Ihejiofor has attributed issues of various health related challenges to consumption of processed foods.
He recommended eating right food as one of the cardinal means of ensuring healthy living.
Speaking during induction ceremony for students of Animal Science Department, Faculty of Agriculture, Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, Ihejiofor argued that the best way to improve one’s health is by eating right food and discovering medicinal value of food to the human anatomy.
He said, “It is high time citizens of the nation turned to agriculture and seek ways to produce organic foods as the advent of processed foods had led to various health challenges such as Cardiomyopathy and kidney diseases.
“Food is fundamental for health as health is a result of hardwire defence mechanism sustained by food.”
While challenging students to be focused on their studies, the commissioner urged them to create innovation and growth in the agricultural sector especially in the area of animal science.
Earlier, Dean of the Faculty, Prof Cordelia Ebenebe said the essence of the induction ceremony was to buttress the importance of agriculture, the role it plays in nation’s building as well as significance of the course.
She charged them to focus on their studies both in theory and practicals as they were potential entrepreneurs bearing in mind advantages of agriculture.
In his remarks, House Committee Chairman on Agriculture, Anambra State House of Assembly, Hon Golden Iloh described the university as a foremost institution in the nation where giants endowed with immense capacity are churned out.
He further called for extensive research and development of a concept that could be sponsored as a bill on the floor of the State Assembly to aid agricultural practices and enhance the visibility of the all important sector.
A Guest Speaker, Dr Onyeka Onyeisi who spoke on the topic, “Poultry Industry in Nigeria: Challenges and Prospects”, said poultry production in the nation is one of the main food sector for the provision of nutrients to its citizens.
Onyeisi, who is the Chairman Poultry Association of Nigeria, highlighted some of the challenges of poultry production in the nation to include: diseases and death of birds,lack of funds as well as inadequate supply of protein for consumption.
Other resource persons who spoke at the ceremony were Public Relations Officer,Pig Farmers Association of Nigeria, Mr Chijioke Okafor, Mr Jude Nwankwo, Programme Manager, Agric Development Project (ADP), Ministry of Agriculture, Awka.