How To Start A Plantain Plantation
Another secret cash making machine that people tend to ignore is plantain farming. We want to look into it today to see how it works. Plantain is very easy to cultivate and maintain unlike other cash crops that requires so much time and money to maintain
This is a low capital agribusiness and plantain plantation can be grown in almost every part of the world as experience has shown. Therefore, if you have any land with loamy soil, you can start plantain farming on it and start making your cash right away.
If you live in India, Florida, the Caribbean and Africa especially around West Africa and Central Africa, then one of the most profitable businesses you can go into if you are interested in the agricultural sector is to go into plantain farming.
West Africa happens to be one of the few places around the world where plantain can successfully be cultivated simply because they have the best soil composition that can support the growth of plantains and they can boast of having over numerous species of plantain.
The capital required to setup a plantain farm can be considered to be moderate but it is indeed a very profitable business to go into as an entrepreneur who lives in Nigeria or in any country with a tropical climate. The basic thing you need to do to get started with your own plantain farm is to secure farming land, prepare the land and then cultivate your plantain.
The fact that loads of people eat plantain makes plantain farming a very lucrative business. Plantains can be eaten when fried or cooked. Plantains can be processed into various forms; it can be processed as juice, and it can as well be processed as plantain chips, amongst others.
Now let us quickly highlight the steps to follow to be able to successfully start your own plantain farm from the scratch in any location of your choice;
To cultivate plantain plantation, you will need the following
- Conduct a qualitative Research
Plantain does not grow in every part of the world; there are selected regions where plantains can be cultivated. For example, plantains do not grow in South Africa. So, if you want to go into plantain farming, it is very important that you conduct your research before committing your money into plantain farming. Your research exposes you to the most suitable area to start your plantain farm; it will give you great idea of where to get plantain seeds (suckers) and how to market your plantain.
- Write a Comprehensive Business Plan
Every serious entrepreneur makes it a point of duty to write a workable business plan before starting a new business. Hence, the right thing to do if you intend starting your own plantain farm, is to sit down and write your business plan. Your business plan should be able to capture all the strategies you would use to run your plantain farm business, your vision and mission statement and your expansion strategies et al. As a matter of fact, when you pencil down your business plan, you might see the need to even go beyond just running your own plantain farm to including food processing (plantain processing) plant to your business.
- Acquire Suitable Land
Plantain is known to grow only in regions with tropical climate. So, if you want to start your own plantain farm, you must make sure you acquire suitable land with the right soil composition for your plantain farm. On the average, you might need at least 2 hectares of land if you want to go into commercial plantain farming.
Loamy soils are the best producing soils for plantain farming because they contain a good organic to inorganic ratio. Organic materials, such as decaying plants and insects, provide soil with air, nutrients and water-retaining matter. This combination of ingredients, when combined with mineral particles, allows soil to remain loose and fertile
- Prepare the Soil
Clear the land and cut some of the trees if any, Plantain plants also grow best in bunches or groups because they protect each other from the harsh rays of the sun. It is important to create an environment where the plantain plants are sheltered either because they are bunched up together or there are other trees to protect them. In preparing your land for your plantain farm you might have to adjust the PH value of your farm land if it is not suitable. Also in preparing your land for plantain farming, your laborers would have to dig holes all over the land where the suckers (plantain seeds) will be planted.
- Source for Plantain Suckers (plantain seeds)
One key factor that can affect your plans to start your own plantain farm is how to source for suckers (plantain seeds) in large quantities. One good thing about plantain farming is that once you are able to get started, the farm can be sustained for over 3 decades without sourcing for new suckers (plantain seeds). Plantain grows rapidly and they reproduce without stress once they are planted in a suitable land.
- Hire Laborers
Running a plantain farm is not a business that an individual could run alone. You would need laborers to help you. You would need laborers to help you in clearing and preparing your farm land, you would need laborers to help you in planting the plantains, you would need laborers to help you in watering your plantain farm, you would need laborers to help you weed your farm and also to help you during harvest.
One good thing about farm laborers is that they are cheaper simply because they are considered as unskilled. But if you are running a mechanized plantain farm, then you would have to up your budget to accommodate machineries and operators.
- Make Plans for Harvest
Within 8-10months your plantain should be ready to produce, and as one is getting matured for harvest, another one is replacing it, they continue in that circle removing any stress expenses of planting again. All you do is to harvest and reap your profits all year round. One thing about plantain farming is that if you are not apt in harvesting your plantain when they are due, they might become over ripe and get rotten (spoilt) and that may mean bad business for you. So, once you know the cycle of plantain farming, then you must make plans to harvest and sell your plantain at the right time so that you won’t run at a loss.
- Market Your Plantain
The market for plantain is large and as a plantain farmer, you must explore all the available avenues to sell your plantains as soon as they become ripe for harvest. You can market your plantain to food processing companies, and you can market it to plantain retailers. The fact that plantain are consumed by many people and can be processed into different forms makes plantain farming business a very lucrative business to go into. So ensure that you develop a good marketing strategy for your plantain farming business if indeed you want to maximize profits in the business.
Lastly, if you have the capacity to establish your own plantain processing company alongside running your own plantain farm, then you will be rest assured to truly maximize profits. Truly plantain farming business has been proven to be a profitable venture and you can make more money from the business if you engage in mechanize farming, it will give you leverage in the market place.
How to make millions from plantain plantation farming
You might be wondering how Plantain Farming can make you millions of naira yearly and we say, with a very little capital. We have seen its results and that's why we are going to take you by the hand and show you, if you are serious to make serious money, how to plant plantain and market it with ease here in Nigeria and especially abroad, using the foolproof method we use.
Do not be mistaken, the plantain that you eat almost everyday; brings in millions of naira into the pockets of few Nigerians and you are entitled to know the secret behind this.
Plantain is an important staple food in many developing countries, especially in Africa. It provides food security and income for small-scale farmers who represent the majority of producers. Only about 15% of the global plantain production is involved in international trade; most production is consumed domestically.
We will definitely show you how we get good plantain to plant, what we do to make them big and importantly, how we market them profitably both locally and internationally for cool money in naira and foreign currencies.
Plantains, like banana, are believed to have originated in southeast Asia, having been cultivated in south India by 500 BC. From here, ancient trade routes distributed it to Africa through Madagascar. By 1000 AD, plantains had spread eastward to Japan and Samoa. It arrived in the Caribbean and Latin America by 1500 AD. Since then, it has spread widely throughout the tropics.
The Food and Agriculture Organization reports that Uganda was the top producer of plantain in 2009 with 9.5 million metric tonnes harvest. The next four major producers of plantain, in decreasing harvest were Ghana, Colombia, Rwanda and Nigeria.
The Food and Agriculture Organization reports, that for 2009, the other major plantain producing regions in the world, by production harvest quantities, were: Cameroon, Peru, Côte d'Ivoire, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Kenya, Myanmar, United Republic of Tanzania, Ecuador, Dominican Republic, Sri Lanka, Venezuela, Guinea, Bolivia, Cuba, Malawi.
The Great Lakes region covering parts of Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi, Tanzania, Kenya and Congo is the largest producer and consumer of plantains in Africa. The per capita consumption of plantain in this region of the world is 250 kilogram per year, the highest in the world.
Nigeria is one of the largest plantain-producing countries in the world. Despite her prominence, Nigeria has not been featuring among plantain-exporting countries because it produces more for local consumption than for export. National per capita consumption figures show its importance relative to other starch staples. However, these figures do not show regional reliance, which is often very important for highly perishable crops that are usually consumed in or near areas of production.
The consumption and exportation of plantain has risen tremendously in Nigeria in recent years because of the rapidly increasing urbanization and the great demand for easy and convenient foods by the non-farming urban populations.
Besides being the staple for many people in more humid regions, plantain is a delicacy and favoured snack for people even in other ecologies. A growing industry, mainly plantain chips, is believed to be responsible for the high demand being experienced now in Nigeria.
Today, the number of farms producing plantain in Nigeria is very few and this makes the demand for it high and profitable. The plantain market is young and not crowded. This is why we want you to be a part of this. Why don't you tap into this wealth-making venture?
Plantain farming is a very lucrative business as a bunch of plantain sells between N650 and N1,500. The beauty of this business is that you can sell it directly to the market people at a higher price. You can also export it to other countries in Africa and the rest of the world. We will show you how to do this too. But, let's assume you are selling them here in Nigeria so, we can do a simple calculation:
You planted 800 plantain suckers and you sell them at N1,500 per bunch at maturity, that is N1,200,000. After deducting expenses of about N220,000 you have N980,000 and you harvest every nine months. The 800 plantain suckers we have used is just an example. Now imagine having a land with 4,000 plantain suckers. Can you see how lucrative this is? The worst case scenario is to sell at N650 per bunch and that will give you N2,600,000 if you plant 4,000 suckers annually. We discovered that it is good to have a large piece of land like an acre as we also discovered that there are suitable plantain farming places where you can get land for cheap price in Nigeria. You can start with a plot of land and that depends on the capital you have. We advise that you start with a plot of land and then increase the farming space when you see that your level of income is increasing. Please note that you will not need to buy the suckers anymore because you will be getting them from the ones that grows from your farm onwards. Is this not profitable?
Unlike starting other tree farms and orchards, starting a plantain farm and growing plantain is easier and less complicated. Although growing plantain still require one's attention, the level of skill required is not as intensive as other trees.
The first thing to consider in starting a plantain farm is looking for the right climate. Plantain cannot thrive in an environment that is too hot or too cold. The ideal climate for plantain is the tropical climate with temperature ranging from 26 to 30 degrees Celsius. But below 14 degrees, the plantain would die. Plantain plants also need good irrigation and humidity. A plantain farm must have a good drainage system and a rich, naturally fertilized soil is the ideal for planting it. If such is not available, one can create compost and add chicken or cow manure to make the land fertile. Plantain plants also grow best in bunches or groups because they protect each other from the harsh rays of the sun. It is important to create an environment where the plantain plants are sheltered either because they are bunched up together or there are other trees to protect them. It is important to maintain the humidity of the plantain farm.
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