FEASIBILITY STUDY FOR THE INDUSTRIAL PROCESSING OF MILLET IN NIGER, 1968.
The economy of Niger is based on agrcolture and livestock. The principal crop is millet, an essential and traditional cereal for the nutrition of the population. Millet production, however, is not carried out on a commercial scale. In recent years the farmers of southern Niger have turned increasingly to cultivation of cash crops, mainly cotton and peanuts. Obliged to buy additional food they tend to purchase imported rice and corn rather than millet, as the high cost of transporting millet makes it as expensive as imported rice or corn and the labour involved in preparing millet for human consumption is much greater. Traditionally the women of the household manually grind the grains of millet to split the hull and then remove the inside kernel by hand. There is increasing
opposition to this time-consuming labour. Processes for mechanically removing the bitter hull from the millet grains have been devised without destroying the nutritional value which the cereal possesses. Thus the Government of Niger, with the assistance of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and with the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) as Executing Agency is investigating the transformation, marketing and processing of millet grain in order to increase incentives for its production and commercialization on a national scale, and a pilot plant is now in operation in Zinder.
In the first millet processing plant in the world at Zinder, flour is seen here at the final stage in the production line as workers sew the tops of the 10 kilo bags in which it is distributed.