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How to Grow Rice for Profit In Lagos

If you are looking for lucrative business ideas in Lagos, you should consider rice farming. There are many rice farmers in Lagos but the demand keeps outweighing the supply. This is because rice is the most consumed food in Lagos.

Also, starting a rice farming business doesn’t need particularly intensive training, it is pretty straightforward. The process takes about four months from planting to harvesting.

However, rice farming is expensive to do profitably. It requires large expanses of land in swampy areas, and this type of land is not easy to come by.

One solution therefore, is to form cooperatives. A cooperative is a group of like minded entrepreneurs, engaged in the same or similar type of business.

Banks and other Non Bank Financial Institutions find it much easier to lend to cooperatives than to individuals. It’s also much easier to pool resources to acquire land and equipment. Where you are unable to form a cooperative, you can join one and work with them.to realise your rice farming dreams.

Before discussing the steps involved with starting this business, here are some very important factors you need to consider first.

4 Factors to Consider Before Starting a Successful Rice Farming Business
  • Land Space: If you are going into this business, you will need a large expanse of land for the farming; fallow land in the country side should be ideal for the business; you need at least 10 acres to start the production. Also, the land should be easily accessible for easy transportation of the finished products to the final users.
  • Capital: This business is capital intensive; you need to lease or buy off several acres of land that will be used for the business. You also need to lease machinery for cultivation and harvesting. Also, you will have to build a silo or warehouse for the storage of the rice before the finished product is sold to wholesalers or the final consumer.
  • Irrigation System: Rice is best grown in a swampy area, but if by chance you couldn’t get hold of swampy land, then you have to build a system of irrigation where water can be constantly supplied to the farm in large quantities to allow the plants grow well.
  • Hulling Mill: if there is no hulling mill near your farm, you need to get hulling machines to remove the hull from the rice seeds.
How To Start a Rice Farming Business

1. Develop a Business Plan

The first step to take is to develop a business plan. The plan should include how much capital you need to get stated, the site and location of the farm, how many hectares you will start with, how to locate your buyers, what are your goals for the first few years of starting the farm, will you buy your own equipment? Or will you lease other people’s equipment? Answers to these questions will give you a clear image of what your business will look like.

2. Capital

You will require sizeable start up capital to run this business. If you don’t have the capital to invest, you can get a business partner that will invest in the business and also help in the running of the business or you can look for an angel investor that will just invest in the business.

3. Acquire the Land to Be Used for the Farming

You can make the payment in installments or you can sign a long term lease agreement with the land owner to use the land as a rice farm.

 4. Start the Cultivation Process
The first step is to source for good rice seedlings to plant. You will plant your rice in a nursery bed, then transplant to the farmland after two to four weeks.
Secondly, if the land isn’t naturally swampy, you need to make provision for constant supply of water especially during the early weeks.
Finally, the weeding process. The rice plant is very subtle to weeds, which means that it can easily be chocked by weeds. So you need to apply herbicides to kill the weeds and you need to spray organic fertilizer every few weeks to help the rice plants grow well.

5. Harvesting

It takes about three to four months after planting for the rice plant to be ready for harvest. You know the plant is ready for harvest when the plant changes from green to brown.

6. Post Harvest Processing: After the harvest, the rice seedling needs to undergo some other processes before it is ready for distribution.

  • Sun Dry the Harvested Rice: After harvesting the rice, sun dry it for three to five days to dry up the remaining moisture.
  • Hulling-: The next stage after is to hull the rice; that is separating the hull from grain. You need a hulling and blowing machine to get this done.
  • Parboiling-: You need to parboil the rice after which, it is ready to be distributed to the buyers.
  • Final Packaging-: You can decide to package your produce in branded sacks unless you have a contract to supply without sacks. The branded sacks should contain the name and location of you farm and also a mobile number with which customers can contact you.

7. Getting Buyers: Even before you start the farm, you need to have a list of potential customers who will need your finished product; you can contact them once the rice is ready for them to start placing supplies. You can also contact restaurant and fast food owners in the area to tell them about your business.

Odira Onyenso
Source: www.mytopbusinessideas.com
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