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PADDY RICE PROCESSING BUSINESS IN NIGERIA; HOW VIABLE?

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PADDY RICE PROCESSING BUSINESS IN NIGERIA; HOW VIABLE?

Rice is the seed of a monocot plant Oryza sativa. As a cereal grain, it is the most important staple food for a large part of the world's human population, especially in East, South, Southeast Asia, the Middle East, Latin America, Africa and the West Indies. It is the grain with the second highest worldwide production, after maize ("corn").

Since a large portion of maize crops are grown for purposes other than human consumption, rice is probably the most important grain with regards to human nutrition and caloric intake, providing more than one fifth of the calories consumed worldwide by the human species.

A traditional food plant in Africa, rice has the potential to improve nutrition, boost food security, foster rural development and support sustainable land care.

Rice is normally grown as an annual plant, although in tropical areas it can survive as a perennial crop and can produce aratoon crop for up to 30 years. The rice plant can grow to 1–1.8 m tall, occasionally more depending on the variety and soil fertility. The grass has long, slender leaves 50–100 cm long and 2–2.5 cm broad. The small wind-pollinated flowers are produced in a branched arching to pendulous inflorescence 30–50 cm long.

The edible seed is a grain (caryopsis) 5–12 mm long and 2–3 mm thick.Rice cultivation is well-suited to countries and regions with low labour costs and high rainfall, as it is very labour-intensive to cultivate and requires plenty of water for cultivation. Rice can be grown practically anywhere, even on a steep hill or mountain. Although its parent species are native to South Asia and certain parts of Africa, centuries of trade and exportation have made it commonplace in many cultures worldwide.

The traditional method for cultivating rice is flooding the fields while, or after, setting the young seedlings. This simple method requires sound planning and servicing of the water damming and channeling, but reduces the growth of less robust weed and pest plants that have no submerged growth state, and deters vermin. While with rice growing and cultivation the flooding is not mandatory, all other methods of irrigation require higher effort in weed and pest control during growth periods and a different approach for fertilizing the soil.

ABAKILIKI RICE:

Abakaliki is the capital city of the present-day Ebonyi State in south-eastern Nigeria. The inhabitants are primarily members of the Igbo nation. It used to be the headquarters of the old Abakaliki zone in the Old Anambra and Enugu state before the creation of Ebonyi State in 1996. Abakaliki is made up of three Clans namely Ezza Ezekuna, Izzi and Ikwo. It has estimated population of 141,438 according to the 2006 census. Nigerians from other communities also reside mainly within the state capital city.

Abakaliki lies at the intersection of the Enugu, Afikpo and Ogoja Roads. Abakaliki was formerly known for its Guinea worm pandemic. However, years of sustained provision of a portable water programme for the public have eradicated Guinea worm cases from the state. Abakaliki hosts many quarry factories, rice mills, large markets, golf course, and luxurious hotels. Ebonyi State University main 'KAS' campus is located in the city with other temporary campuses in nearby Presco and Ishekie. Plans for a new build central campus on the outskirts of the city are currently underway. Several new private factories, especially food processing industries, have taken advantage of the State government's tax holiday and other incentives to establish in the state capital.

Abakaliki is also the food basket of southern Nigeria. The city has been a leading producer of processed rice, yam, and cassava for decades. Newer technology recently introduced has enabled the modernisation of the city's rice mill complex for improved quality of rice processing.

Consequently, research has shown that Abakiliki soil produces one of the best local rice in Nigeria. The rice is very rich in protein, vitamins,minerals and carbohydrates etc. A new day has come for rice producers in Abakiliki mostly now that Abakiliki Rice Farmers Association, Abakiliki Rice Mill Owners Association, Ebonyi state government and some international agencies like USAID,UNIDO and CANDEL etc are partnering to improve on rice production in the state.

OFADA RICE:

Ofada is a small town in Obafemi Owode LGA of Ogun state. The town was known for its Agricultural potentials mostly in the cultivation of rice on its vast arable land. Ofada Rice is a generic name used to describe all rice species produced and processed in the rice producing cluster of south-western Nigeria. Alot of potentials exist in its cultivation, processing and Export of Ofada Rice. The UK Department for International Development programme has revealed the massive potentials that exist exporting ofada rice to UK and USA. This is so because there are about 340,000 Nigerians living in the UK and a potential demand of over 120 tones of ofada rice annually. The fast food industries in Nigeria are even hungry for ofada rice. The market in the US seems even to have more potentials of growth than the UK market. They can be packaged in 1kg or 2kg bags like the old Uncle Bens rice.

BARO RICE:

Baro is an ancient town in Niger state owned by the Nupe people. Nupe is a very popular ethnic group in the middle belt now north central region of northern Nigeria. They are found in Niger state and parts of kogi state. They are known for their Agricultural Might in the cultivation of Rice, Yam, Cassava and Animal Husbandry etc.They has a very fertile clay-loamy soil and huge hectares of uncultivated Agricultural lands for rice cultivation.

MAKURDI RICE:

Makurdi is a Local Government Area in Benue state and also the state capital of the state. Benue state has been known as “the food basket of the nation”. They are known for Yam, Cassava, Maize and Rice cultivation etc.They have been proved to have a very fertile soil and a vast land for Agriculture with lots of state government incentives to encourage investors.

THE MARKET:

Based on the analysis so far made, you can agree with me that a lot of potential exist in Nigeria’s Rice cultivation and processing Industry. With a population of over 165 million people and an estimated national population growth rate of 5.7% per annum ,an average economic growth rate of 3.5% per annum in the past five {5} years, Nigeria has a large market for rice .

There is a huge business opportunity in the industry mostly now that the Federal Government is poised towards increasing Nigeria’s Rice production as producers will be able to produce for both local consumption and export.

The project can be operated on a small, medium or large scale depending on the financial capacity of the investor.


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Read 4362 times Last modified on Thursday, 12 December 2013 12:43


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