Agriculture is among the leading sectors of the economy in many African countries. Agricultural products are one of the main exports from the continent. Agriculture is one of the profitable businesses in Africa one can venture in. Agricultural business ideas revolve around fertilizer, agricultural equipment, energy, pesticides, feeds and seeds. This article will give you an insight into some agriculture processing business ideas you can start today.
Access to loans might be essential if you want to own a farm for your agro processing business instead of buying produces from farmers. Our guide on how you can obtain a farm loanmay help you.
What is Agro Processing Business
Agro processing business refers to the transformation of agricultural produce into a more valuable product. This involves adding value to raw materials such as fruits, vegetables, grains, and other crops through various processes such as drying, cleaning, sorting, grading, packaging, and labeling. The goal of agro processing is to increase the shelf life of the agricultural products, improve their quality, and create new products with higher market value.
Agro Processing Examples
Coconut Oil Production
Coconut oil is used for various purposes like the production of toilet soaps, laundry soap, hair oils and other cosmetic products. The oil has various industrial application purposes. Coconuts do well in coastal areas and as such, you can start the business as you are in a favorable location. Setting up your business in a place where the raw materials are available will save you transportation costs.
Fruit Juice Production
Fruit juice production is a profitable business, mainly because it has a ready market. The kind of fruits to use for juice production should be selected based on the availability of fruits. You can start with a small and single and expand to different fruits production. It would be more profitable if you grow the fruits by yourself or source them near you.
You can start a honey processing business. The business involves removing honey from wax and packaging it. You can start small by removing wax manually before expanding to using machines. Honey fetches a lot of money and you can sell in wholesale and in retail. Producing pure honey will make people love it and get many customers.
Livestock Feed Production
With many farmers searching for food for their livestock, you can start producing livestock feeds if you know the mixing formula. You also need to know about food supplementary products for different livestock. Different feeds should have different feed supplements.
If you have no prior knowledge of livestock feed and its production, make sure to find a training program or a mentor in your area. You can use online resources as well. A business plan is always crucial in any business undertaking. Therefore, make sure you draft a realistic livestock feed production business plan.
Generally, the main ingredients in commercial livestock feed include protein meals and cakes, vitamins, molasses, peanut seedling, maize and wheat straws, minerals, feed grains such as brans, soybeans, maize, sorghum, oats, barley, and other edible agro by-products.
The video below on how to start a livestock feed business was made for Indian farmers. However, the concepts in the video are applicable even in Africa.
Spice Powder Processing
Food spices attract high costs and are profitable. If you know how to grind and package spices, it is a business idea you can start. You can mix different spice powders like chilly, cumin, garlic, clove, and turmeric to come up with a unique spice. Alternatively, you can sell individual spices for people to mix on their own. It depends on your customers’ preferences.
Sunflower Oil Production
Sunflower oil production is a capital intensive business idea. It requires rigorous processing activities. However, if you have the business capital and workforce, it is a profitable business idea. You can source the processing equipment. Some of the processes that sunflower oil goes through include cleaning, hydration, neutralization, freeing, and nitriding. You can hire experts if you have the resources.
Baskets are common in rural areas and tourist locations and as such, weaving baskets can fetch you a lot of money. Lately, baskets are not only being used for shopping but also interior house decoration.
You can start milling grains and selling flour. There are different kinds of grains that you can mill to get high-quality flour. For instance, you can start selling maize flour, wheat flour, millet flour. Foods like burgers and cakes are made from flour, making it a lucrative business. Knowing how to mix different types of flour is advantageous.
Groundnut processing is a profitable business idea that you can start will small capital. If you can process groundnuts on a large scale, there is potential to export. Groundnuts are not seasonal crops and as such, you can have a regular supply of raw materials. Doctors recommend eating groundnuts because of their health benefits. Groundnut oil is good for human consumption and can be used to cook food.
Sisal is usually grown in arid and semi-arid areas. If you have sisals near you, you can start to process sisal. Its fiber is used in making ropes. You do not need a machine since you can extract sisal fiber manually. With time, you can grow your business and buy equipment for removing fiber. Hence, you can start selling fiber in large quantities.
Soya is a very profitable crop because of its various uses such as oil, human consumption, animal feed, etc. Soyabeans are recommended by doctors because of their health benefits, especially for people with diabetes and cancer. Soybeans processing involves mixing, cutting and extruding raw materials. Soyabeans processing by-products include tofu, soy milk, soy oil, soya nuggets/chunks, soy sauce, and soy flour. All of these products are easily marketable because of their health and medical benefits.
Meat Processing and Packaging
Meat processing is a capital intensive investment. However, it is a profitable business that can help get profits. It requires the manufacture of processed meat products and packaging them. It would be best if you had proper processing, packaging and advertisement for the business.
Some of the meat processing equipment you will need to include grinders, blenders, cutters, dicing machines, tenderizing machine, smoking machine, etc.
Final Thoughts On Agri Processing Business Ideas
Agriculture is one of the pillars of African economies. If you are already into agriculture or you have a passion for agriculture and want to venture into it, you should consider some of these agro processing business ideas in Africa.