According to Manuel Murrenhoff, Managing Director of Bühler Nigeria, the SnackFix small-scale cereal bar production system from Swiss technology company Bühler (https://www.BuhlerGroup.com/) is the ideal solution for small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to add value to locally produced grains in Nigeria and help the country address food security.
Consumption of on-the-go snacks in Nigeria is gradually increasing, providing chances for SMEs to enter the industry. By 2025, “this market segment is expected to exceed half a million tonnes in terms of bars, fruit, and sweet snacks alone,” claims Murrenhoff. The main factor is the expanding population, which is predicted to reach 377 million people by the year 2050 from a projected 223.8 million in 2023, an increase of 2.41% over 2022.
According to Murrenhoff, “the economically active segment of Nigerian society is quite sizeable and very mobile, which is boosting on-the-go snacking consumption.” Additionally, it is more important than ever to promote the consumption of the entire spectrum of locally cultivated grains to control the price of finished goods given that half of the population lives below the poverty line.
Nigeria cannot possible feed its expanding population by importing wheat and other foodstuffs, as the price of wheat is expected to reach record highs. On the one side, there is a lack of foreign currency, and on the other, prices are rising everywhere. Because local grains may be successfully blended into ready-to-eat foods, innovation employing them can play a significant role in ensuring food security, according to Murrenhoff.
Bühler’s Snackfix, created for food producers seeking a piece of the on-the-go snack market, supports the processing of locally sourced grains for snacks while upholding the highest food safety requirements, according to Iyore Amadasun, Sales and Channel Business Manager at Bühler Nigeria.
A multi-grain system called SnackFix enables SMEs in Nigeria to innovate across the range of locally produced grains. The technology offers a basic, plug-and-play solution that is portable, economical, and simple to install and use.
SnackFix has everything required for high-quality manufacturing in one unit, including a continuous mixer, a cooling tunnel, and a cutting system. A large range of cereal bars can be produced by SMEs using this combination at a rate of up to 130 kg per hour.
Customers gain from Bühler’s expertise in product development employing a variety of locally produced grains including sesame seeds, cashews, and peanuts, for example. According to Amadasun, “We can assist new entrants in the market in finding the optimal formula to suit functional and indulgent customer requirements in this segment and then provide them with a tailored solution. Additionally, Bühler maintains a laboratory and research center in Switzerland to help with various formulations and product development.
According to Amadasun, the ready-to-eat business is strategically significant to Nigeria because it can adapt local grains for consumption as snacks, encourage healthy eating practices, and help with food security at the same time.
Bühler Nigeria, a market leader in grain and food processing with locations in Lagos and Kano, provides services for grain drying and storage, flour milling, rice milling, cacao and chocolate processing, wafer and biscuit manufacturing, pasta and noodle manufacturing, feed milling, and aqua feed milling. Additionally, Bühler Nigeria offers assistance in the form of flexible packaging systems, ink and coating application solutions, and other services.