Agree with me that Nigerians have started to take agriculture more seriously since the recession. Moreover, people began to use their farms more than ever, to provide food for their family or for commercial sales.
Ogbono's business is a very lucrative business in the agriculture industry, however very unexplored. This article will explain in clear words how to set up a business in Ogbono anywhere in Nigeria.
Ogbono's business is a juicy business whose ability to provide a steady income stream. On January 12, 2017, the Daily Trust Newspaper reported that the federal government has earmarked 86.5 million Naira, which it will spend for growing Ogunu in Nigeria.
This is done because, according to them, the potential market of the US and Europe is large. The fact that even the federal government has diverted their attention, from their expensive crude oil to investing in Ogbono's growth, should be enough of a hint that this business is a hot cake.
Profitability / Opportunities
Ogbono's business is secretly turning young farmers into millionaires in less than a year. Ogbono is a seasonal cash crop used primarily for human consumption.
It is always very expensive compared to other ingredients we use to make soup. A regular hotel can be bought for the price of 150 Naira, while a cup of Oguno will equally reach 600 and up, depending on the season.
Ogbono's business is very profitable, because you can sell it at good prices when it is almost out of season. A bag contains the equivalent of 17 buckets weighing 45-52 kg.
Assuming you buy a bag of Ogbono at 80,000 Naira then you get about 17 buckets from this bag. If you sell this bucket each for Nair 9,000, you can rake in a profit of almost 60, even after all the expenses have been made.
How to start an Ogbono business
Due to the rate of consumption of ogono, especially in the south, there is a rapid and high demand for it, thus making it one of the most specialized products.
It's not hard to get started. First identify your target market, the place to purchase them in abundance and in a cheaper quantity that may be more accessible to you as well. Then the next thing is for you to start.
You can set up an Ogbono business for any amount. However, if you are planning to do wholesale, you may need between 50-100,000 naira for a start.
There are agricultural loans that are easily accessible to farmers nationwide. With the right pitch, you should be able to get a good loan that will help you set up your business comfortably.
You can also get loans from an investor, friends, family or relatives.
Buy or hang the Ogbono
You can get ogono seeds at cheap prices, directly from farmers. You get it from experienced farmers to get a gate price on the farm.
You can buy from merchants or importers who are big traders in the business and can offer a reasonable price per bag which can be a bit higher compared to that of the farmers but can still provide good profits.
However, if you decide to plant the Ogbono tree, it is possible, but the process is a bit more tedious. Therefore, for the sake of time and profits, I would recommend that you buy from farmers and let them plant.
You can buy ebony-sized ebony seeds, they usually produce a lot of it. Another place where this seed can be purchased is in the northern state of Cross River, the residents of Ubudo and Ikum are now very seriously engaged in Uguna because of the amount of money they received from those who chose nature. This gave them the confidence to domesticate their ogon for commercial purposes.
Store the Ogbono seeds
You can store your ogon seeds in a warehouse or even in your garage. Farmers usually dry the ogono seeds before selling them to wholesalers.
However, if you purchase the fresh ones, you can leave them to dry under the sun for two days. This will remove most of the moisture from the nuts.
This way, your ogono seeds can last longer (usually six months) without growing mucus.
Ogbono seed harvest
In case you decide to go for the source of your ogono seeds directly from the tree, the process is quite tedious but very simple once you get the hang of it.
Ogbono falls by itself from the tree when they are ripe. You can then eat them, or leave them to crumble to get the nuts.
Then the cards are broken in stone or a hard object, when they are dried and the seed is removed from the inside. Ogbono has three major harvest periods in West Africa.
In Nigeria it is from September, in Ivory Coast it is usually from January while Cameroon is from March. A businessman can take advantage of this difference in the harvest seasons, buy from different countries at any time of the year, and sell his ogbon all year round to customers.
Market your product
You can use social media, or online commercial sites such as JiJi, Jumia or Konga. You can also go directly to your local market and let them know about your business.
You can contact the women of the market and tell them about your business, give them a discounted price compared to the regular price and they will be very happy to purchase from you.
Make sure you provide quality ogono and maintain fast and efficient delivery in order to retain customers. Other places that can be provided for them are restaurants, hotels, malls and supermarkets that sell food products or fast food. Traders can even help you sell them or buy back from you and sell during shortages.
Always clean the ogbon by removing dust and dirt.
Store them in a dry and good place with good storage equipment.
Do not store your Ogbono bags, as water, insects or pests can reach them or feed them.
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