A local farmer, Mr Sunday Ido has harped on the benefits of snail slime to the pharmaceutical industry and called for its inclusion in agricultural value-chain.
Ido, the Chief Executive Officer of Real farms based in Calabar, said this in a telephone interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Monday in Lagos.
The farmer said that it was important to improve on the value of agriculture including snail slime.
“Agriculture is basically working on the farm to produce either crop or animal produce. But when you go a step further to improve and innovatively add value to what you harvested from the farm to increase its revenue-earning power, then you are practising agribusiness.
“As a modern-day farmer, my focus is beyond just rearing snails for consumption. I am constantly researching on how snails and its products can add value to humanity and nature sustainably.
“This quest has led to the discovery of how modern-day scientist are already utilising snails and its products in the pharmaceutical and beauty products industry.
“Since antiquity, snails have been used for pharmaceuticals and beauty products.
“As the logic goes, to get a youthful radiance to your skin, use snail slime. When snails are agitated, they secrete a thick fluid (slime) as a means to protect themselves,’’ Ido said.
He, however, noted that slime was packed with nutrients and beneficial to the skin like hyaluronic acid, glycoprotein enzymes, antimicrobial and copper peptides, and proteoglycans.
“When applied to the face and other parts of the body, it stimulates the growth of collagen and elastin, which repairs signs of ageing.’’
Ido harped on the healing powers of snail slime and called for financial assistance from the Federal Government to boost snail farming.
“It is acclaimed to minimise the damage generated by harmful free radicals that are responsible for premature skin ageing, and as a biochemist, by training, I can tell that this works when applied.
“Snails slimes naturally contain healing properties and adding them to your serum or moisturiser that daily helps to rejuvenate the skin.
“At the moment, snail farming is lucrative. Only the thing needed is financial aid to increase farm and production capacity.
“We currently do not produce enough to meet local consumption and export.
“The government needs to make incentives available to existing farmers and those who intend to join the snail business,” Ido added.
The farmer also called for research and development opportunities through access to modern-day laboratories and equipment for local farmers and world-class farming programmes, training and retraining opportunities.
He said: “Loan facilities for farmers will go a long way in helping snail farmers.”