Monday, May 11, 2020

How To Start Rice Farming Business In Nigeria

  Obyke Nonny       Monday, May 11, 2020
Hello! You are welcomed to Livestockspot blog. I believe if you landed on this page, you were actually looking for a quality information on how to start rice farming business in Nigeria. Like most people do know that rice farming and production in Nigeria is low because of importation.
Because of this importation of rice, the Nigeria economy is also suffering. This was why the Government has put a stop/ban to rice importation and tries to make the nation produce it’s own food instead of depending on other countries.
In this post, I will unveil to you each and every step needed to start a successful rice farming business in Nigeria. All you need to do is to make sure you read this post to the end to understand what works best.
(We have also discussed other farming businesses which are very lucrative and profitable. I will drop the links in between the post).
You know in Nigeria per say Agricultural sector is a booming wealth generating machine that is neglected especially rice farming.
We often tend to look for other lucrative businesses aside Agriculture because we see it as stress. And this makes us run away from this business without thinking of how lucrative it is.
Without wasting much time, let me take you to the ultimate step by step guide on how to start rice farming business in Nigeria.

About Rice Farming Business?

Rice farming business has a very huge profit prospects in Nigeria. Why? Because nearly half of the world’s population consumes this cereal crop. Rice farming business can give you the wealthy life of your dreams.
Statistics shows that Nigeria is one of the highest rice consuming country in the world. This is so because when the importation of foreign rice was stopped, the price of rice inflated which became burden to Nigerians.
Rice farming is mostly possible in certain regions (swampy areas) of the country but with highly mechanized and efficient water control, it can be grown in anywhere in Nigeria.
Rice consist of more than 40,000 varieties which can be grown in any country.
Asia is the highest rice producing and consuming continent, as they produce and consume about 80% of the world’s rice.
Before you embark into rice farming business is Nigeria, there are certain questions you need to ask yourself. Like in this business, most people do ask:
How do rice farmers make money? How many bags of rice do you get per acre? Is rice farming a lucrative business in Nigeria? What are the steps in planting rice? How long does it take for rice to grow in Nigeria? And so many more questions.
I will give a concrete answers to all these questions most people ask about rice farming business.

How Lucrative is rice farming in Nigeria?

Okay, let me start by pointing out how profitable and lucrative this farming business is. Yes, you need to know how remunerative this business is. Because it would be a shame you entered into a business you have no idea its true worth.
Before we go any further, let me motivate with a short story of a young Anambra man. This man made fortunes and became wealthy by venturing into rice farming business.
Curtix, a 34 years old Nigerian man became a successful business man through rice farming. This was because he fully equipped himself about this business before starting it. The very interesting thing about Curtix is that he never went to university.
Let me point out something here, you don’t need to have college degrees in other to become wealthy. He was into restaurant business in Onitsha main market but he was not pulling his ground in his former business.
Having knowledge and possibilities of how profitable and lucrative rice production business could be in Nigeria and Africa alone, he journeyed into it. And now he is one of the richest rice farmer in Nigeria.

You may also want to know how Curtix learnt about rice farming?

He learnt about rice farming through what you are doing now; by simply surfing the internet and reading about rice production in Nigeria. He became self-educated through the internet because he wanted it badly.
He said:
“I learnt everything I need from the internet. I downloaded eBooks and every article I needed on rice farming and equipped myself on the field.”

What an inspiring story, today curtix is one of the rich rice farmer at Anambra in Nigeria. Am actually trying to bring out from this short story that anything is possible so long as you put your mind towards it. All you need is to grasp as many information as possible in this rice farming business and you’ll become successful as well.

States Where Rice Can Be Grown in Nigeria

I believe that we all know the richest man in Africa and as well in Nigeria. It is no other person than Aliku Dangote. This man is also into the rice farming business.
This is to show you that rice is very lucrative and can actually make you the wealthy. I want to list out the states where rice can be grown in Nigeria.
Although you can actually produce and grow rice anywhere in the country Nigeria, there are specific areas where rice do absolutely well. They are;
1.) Anambra State – Anambra Rice
2.) Ebonyi State – Ebonyi Rice
3.) Ekiti State – Igbemo Rice
4.) Gombe State – Mas Rice Mill
5.) Kano State – UMZA Rice
6.) Kebbi State – Labana Rice
7.) Niger State – Mama Happy Rice
8.) Ogun State – Ofada Rice
9.) Nasarawa State – Olam Rice

Benefits of Rice Farming (How do rice farmers make money?)

1.) Source of Food: 

Rice has been and will always be the most consumed food in the world. It is a known food that is consumed all over the world. In Nigeria, rice has become a major food that is specially prepared for festive periods like Easter, Christmas and Sallah.
And almost all families do cook rice on Sundays and during ceremonial events too. Because of all these activities, it has made the demand of rice high and thus making this business highly lucrative for farmers in Nigeria and all over the world.

2.) Provision of Employment:

This is an opportunity for the mass, especially the unemployed youths of our country Nigeria to become relevant to the society.
Majority of the society only believes in white collar job but don’t know that they can actually make fortunes from farming business like this one.

3.) Production of Beer/Liquor:

Do you have any idea that alcoholic drinks like beers, liquor and most especially distilled spirit can be manufactured from rice? Of course, Yes. Rice wine is the name of the liquor that can be processed from rice.
This can be produced simply from the fermentation of rice starch that has been converted to sugar. This beer is mainly consumed in Asia continent and has about 18% to 25% alcohol content.

4.) Production of Rice Flour:

Rice can also be converted to rice flour by grinding it. This makes it possible to have rice in different forms. Rice flour can be achieved simply by grinding raw rice with blender, grain mills or by other traditional grinding methods. Rice flour is usually used as an alternative for wheat. Here are some of the products gotten from rice flour; rice noodles, rice cakes, rice paper etc.

5.) Source of Income:

Rice farming business is a good income source. This is so because when rice is produced, it can be traded in the market or exchanged for money.

How to Start Rice Farming Business in Nigeria

Here, I will list and explain each of the processes involved in rice farming and production.
At the end is a video to see how you can perform the Rice farming processes.
1.) Choice of Land
2.) Preparation of Land for rice farming
3.) Choose healthy seedlings
4.) Time of planting
5.) Nursery raising
6.) Transplanting
7.) Application of fertilizer
8.) Harvesting
The processes involved in rice farming depends solely on ecological and geographical factors. What I mean to say is that, different  categories of rice seedlings thrive more in certain geographical and ecological areas in Nigeria.
Below are the explanation of the rice farming processes.

1.) Choice of Land:

In other to be successful in rice farming business in Nigeria, the choice of land for cultivation of your crop matters a lot. So long as you want to thrive in this business in the long run, it is advisable to choose your farm site in ecological regions where rice are being grown traditionally.
The region or states depends on you. I have listed the states and regions in Nigeria where rice farming and production are done well above.
The best soil type for the cultivation of rice is the clayey-loamy soil. What i mean here is that the soil is a mixture of clay and loamy soil.
The soil should be highly fertile and have a good water retaining capacity. That is why it is recommended that rice farming areas are always swampy areas.

2.) Preparation of Land for Rice Farming:  

The next step after we have chosen a good land is preparation of the land. Here, I will give you the techniques for that.
  • The preparation of the farm land should start around November to February in other to expose the weeds to scorching sun of Harmattan. You can do this by ploughing the field.
  • Also it is good for the field to be disc harrowed before the first rain. They do this in other to flood field with the first rain so the land can be conducive for wet or rice transplanting.
  • In other to prevent nitrogen loss, you have to construct bunds. And make sure that water covers the paddy field completely.

3.) Choose healthy seedlings:

Here are the three (3) popular varieties of rice commonly grown in Nigeria. They are:
a.) Upland rice
b.) Lowland rice
c.) Fadama rice.
It is best that you manually chose your rice so as to prevent choosing an unhealthy one. This will make you choose better and more healthy seeds. The healthier your seeds are, the greater the chances of high yield possibilities.
It is advisable to get your seeds from authorized and licensed companies like Nigeria Agricultural Seeds Council (NASC).

4.) Time of planting:

There is a specific season or time for planting rice. Planting of rice usually starts during the rainy season which normally start around the month of May – June.
And recall that your field must be able to retain water because rice survives in water logged or swampy areas.

5.) Nursery Raising:

There is what’s called nursery raising in rice farming. What this means is that you’ll first of all start planting your seed in a nursery before transplanting to the field. Below are the steps to follow in nursery raising,
  • You have to soak your seedlings inside water for at least 24 hours.
  • You’ll incubate for about 2-3 days by spreading the seeds on the floor and covering them with polythene bags.
  • Then sow the seeds on the puddle nursery field uniformly after incubation.
  • The water level of the nursery field shouldn’t be excess. You can do this by constructing water drainage canals.
  • Make sure the raising of seeds are in areas with significant high rain falls.
  • You should prevent pests like birds from your seeds during germination with the aid of scarecrows.
  • Also add some organic manures and inorganic fertilizer to your nursery field.

6.) Transplanting:

After about 21 days, transplanting of seedling from the nursery to the farmland  starts. You can simply do this by uprooting the seedlings. To do this, you have to hold the base of the culms between your thumb and forefinger and pull the seedlings sideways.
Then transplant your seedlings to the hills. About 2-3 seedling will contain in one hill. The spacing of the seedlings should be about 20 cm between rows and 15-20 cm between plants.
Note: It is best to transplant the early maturing seedlings 15 cm apart and transplant medium and late maturing seedlings 20 cm apart.
7.) Application of fertilizer:
For better and high yield rate, follow the below technique for fertilizer application.
  • First Application: Apply about 200 Kg/Ha of NPK 15:15:15 carefully after transplanting. Then after 30 days of transplanting, apply 100 Kg/Ha of urea broadcast.
  • Second Application: At ear initiation, apply or broadcast 100 kg/ha of urea.
8.) Harvesting:
Your rice would be ready for harvesting in about 4-5 months, by then, they should be fully mature.
For you to know the rice maturity process, the colour of the leaves will change from green to light brown.

Other Harvesting Processes:

These are post harvesting and final production processes which involves drying, hulling, parboiling, packaging and storage.
a.) Drying:
This is the process of sun drying the paddy so as to reduce the moisture content to about 13-14 percent.
This will help to prevent the rice from breaking during the milling process.
b.) Parboiling:
This is the process of soaking the paddy in a hot water of about 70°c for close to 6 hours. This will cause the grains to float and thus makes it easier for removal.
As the rice starts swelling, the husk will  begin to split open. Then stop the parboiling process and move on to the next.
c.)  Hulling:
This is the process of separating the edible part of rice from the husk that have split open. The best way to do this is by  simply using the hulling machine.
d.) Packaging:
Package your rice on dry and clean bag that has the logo of your farm boldly inscribed on it.
e.) Storage:
Finally you store your already packaged rice in a cool and pest free stores. Where they are ready for distribution.

Here is a video on how to start rice farming business in Nigeria 

How many bags of rice do you get per acre?

The norm is that people get an average of 35 gunny bags per acre (each bag weighing 50 kg). Thus the average yield is about 1750 Kg of paddy – this gets converted to about 1000 kg of Rice after removing the husk. There are 2 costs involved: Labour costs (mainly for paddy) – tilling (ploughing), transplanting and harvest. Copied from

Challenges of Rice Farming Business in Nigeria

Despite the fact that rice farming business is a very lucrative and profitable business to venture into, there also exists certain challenges that’s facing rice farming business in Nigeria. Below are some of them;
1.) Capital Requirements:
Like any other business, rice farming business requires capital. But here, unlike other businesses, rice farming business requires huge amount of capital. Therefore, before you can setup and manage this business, you must be in possession of huge capital.
But don’t be discouraged because you can get funds and loans from the government, Micro-finance banks and even some cooperative companies. These organisations are always eager and willing to help so long as the business involves Agriculture.
2.) High Importation:
Although the government have put a ban on the importation of rice into Nigeria, it is still posing as a threat. Why? Because of the bribery and corruption in the country, people do smuggle those foreign rice into Nigeria. They also reduce the price and sell cheaper and faster than the Locally produced rice. This poses as a great threat to rice farmers and producers in the country.
3.) Pest and Diseases:
This is also another challenge which poses as a threat to rice farmers in Nigeria. Pests like Birds will always continue to be a threat to our crops. Thereby, reducing the optimum yield of the rice production and farming.
4.) Transportation:
As we are fully aware of the condition in which our country Nigeria is in, we know that there are bad roads. So this is also has a limiting factor to the rice farming business. Therefore, make sure that the roads connecting to your farm is good for easy transportation of your products.


From all these step by step process and guide on how to start a rice farming business, I strongly believe that this piece of information would be of great help to you.
Note: Business is not just something that booms immediately, it requires time and patience. But in this very business, this is among the top 10 most profitable and lucrative agricultural business.
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