Goods worth about N450 million were destroyed in a fire that gutted Erisco Foods Ltd warehouse in Lagos, Mr Tokunbo Agbede, the company’s General Manager said on Tuesday.
Tokunbo made the disclosure at a news conference on in Lagos.
Agbede said that the cause of the incident which happened about 6 a.m. on Monday at the Eleganza Warehouse of the company had yet to be ascertained.
He said that investigation into the incident was ongoing by the Nigerian Police and the Lagos State Fire Service.
“The fire is a colossal loss to the company at a time when we are trying to wind down production in Nigeria.
“The destruction of our raw materials will not have been much if government agencies had supported us with foreign exchange and favourable business environment.
“As it, most of the raw materials were destroyed because they were lying in the warehouse unused with other tomato paste that have yet to be sold,’’ Agbede said.
He urged regulatory agencies to support local manufacturers in a bid to stimulate the economic growth desired by government.
Erisco Foods Limited had announced the shutdown of its tomato manufacturing business in Nigeria citing an unfavourable operating condition which had necessitated increase in its operational costs.
President/CEO of the company, Eric Umeofia, told newsmen earlier this month that the company had concluded plans to relocate the manufacturing aspect of the business to China from where finished products would be imported and sold to consumers in Nigeria and other parts of the world.