When considering the major ingredients of cooking in Nigeria, tomato is one of them. Over 80% of the meals we make in this country need tomatoes. Be it soup, stew, salads, or even portage, all these and many more needs tomato.
This main ingredient goes with almost everything, it is accepted in virtually all the regions and tribes in the country.
So in this post, we intend to share with you important points on how To start the tomatoes business in Nigeria.
First, let’s consider the Benefits Of Tomato. Some of the benefits of this unique farm product are:
Tomatoes are a good source of a high level of VitaminC and beta-carotene.
Also, its thick red color signifies that this farm crop contains a high level of antioxidant. It further contains Vitamin E which helps the clarity of sight.
Benefits In Business
Speaking of tomatoes’ benefits in business is speaking directly about profit, the market is ever ready for tomatoes, it is one of the commodities that does not need many adverts, you only have to take it to the right place after harvest and you will be shocked at the huge returns you will get.
How To Grow Tomatoes
Growing tomatoes is quite an easy task. You can plant it within a small space of land, big farmland, or even in your back yard.
This product is highly rewarding and you will be amazed by your earnings from this product. Interestingly, you can grow this product all throughout the year.
6 Guidelines To Starting Your Tomato Business.
A major Place with a high tendency of growing this product all year long is Kano and this is because this state has an irrigation system that’s favorable to tomato growth. As for other regions, the best time to cultivate this product is within the rainy season.
Ensure You Choose The Best Specie
This is a very important point, ensure that it’s is the high yield species you choose, don’t go for the local species.
It is advisable that you use the Roma Tomato. This kind of tomato is well known in the country for its size and deep red color.
It is useful both for canning and making an ordinary paste.
Another name for Roma tomatoes is Italian tomatoes or Italian plum.
You may be wondering; why Roma Tomatoes? This kind of tomatoes has a strong flesh, the water inside is not much and so it lasts longer than the other types.
Make The Nursery
It is good you do this in the month of March or April. This is usually the beginning of the raining of the rainy in Nigeria.
The most preferable soil type for tomato is black loose loamy soil, but this does not mean it can’t grow on any other soil, generally, tomato can grow on virtually all the soil types available in Nigeria. So you can make the nursery at your backyard or get a piece of land for it.
For the Nursery,
Ensure you clear the grasses
Use hand trowel and how’s to loosen the soil
Take out the tomato seeds from the tomatoes and spread it all over the prepared soil space.
Try and protect it from birds, ants, and fowls so that they won’t pick up the seed. To achieve this, you can cover it with dry grasses.
After seven days or so less you will discover that it is germinating already, leave it till another five days, then you can take off the dry grasses that you used for protecting the seeds, after this, leave the seed for an additional one month before you transplant them.
Do The Transplanting
This is the next step you need to take, move the plants to the permanent farm, there they will mature and be ready for harvest.
In case you have big farmland, hire the service of laborers to assist you.
It is crucial that you or whoever Is assisting you should handle the plants with care, at this time, they will still be tender, so it doesn’t break off.
Use a small wood to open the soil, put the seed into the hole, and cover it up with enough soil.
Remember that the tomato plant is quite delicate and tender, so make sure you transplant them the same day you uprooted them from the nursery.
Do The Weeding
After transplanting, leave it for 2 and months, then you can do the wedding now. Hire laborers who will help you do the weeding while you just supervise their work and importantly to ensure that they don’t damage the tomatoes while trying to get the weeds out of the way.
As soon as you complete the first wedding process, now apply fertilizers, this is necessary so that all the soil nutrients taken by the weeds can be restored.
So I will advise that you apply phosphorus, potassium, potash, calcium, magnesium, and nitrogen. Use a fertilizer that can give your soil all these nutrients, it’s quite important.
You can also check the nutrients level and pH level of your soil by testing it.
Market Your Tomato Products
Ensure that you get your market-ready before you harvest your tomatoes. Seek for those who are interested in buying your tomatoes, and find out where you can supply them to, you know tomatoes are perishable goods so you have to tell them off as fast as possible.
There is a major market in Lagos State where lots of vegetables including fresh tomatoes are sold. This market is called Mile 12.
Though there are lots of Northerners who bring their products there for sales but who says you can’t join them even if you are not a Northerner.
Go there, make inquiries as to what you need to do, negotiate with the lords there, pay if you have to, and you will be given space to sell your goods.