How To Start Jute (Ewedu) Farming In Nigeria Or Africa: Complete Guide

How To Start Jute (Ewedu) Farming In Nigeria Or Africa: Complete Guide | Image Source: Terima Kasih

The jute plant, widely called Ewedu in Nigeria, is mostly cultivated in Asia, the Middle East, and many parts of Africa. India is the world’s largest producer of Jute, while Bangladesh is the largest cultivator of Jute.

The two countries use huge in the production of jute fibres which is used to largely produce jute bags which are used in the shipments of agricultural products worldwide, with the Jat Area in Bangladesh being the most famous for the highest quality of jute fibre.

In Nigeria, Jute is instead eaten, rather than used in the production of jute bags which have a far higher value when sold. but irrespective, jute farmers and traders in Nigeria who sell jute for the purpose of edible human consumption still generate a good income from its trade.

With opportunities in the cultivation of the jute plant for both food and fibres, venturing into the jute farming business in Nigeria, Africa, or anywhere else around the world is a great move to make.

Here’s how to start a Jute or Ewedu farming business in Nigeria:

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What Is Jute Or Ewedu?

Jute or ewedu is a leaf plant globally known as Jute mallow. It is a native to western Nigeria and parts of Asia and belongs to the family of Ewedu. In contrast, botanically, it is known as Corchorus Olitorus.

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What Is Jute or Ewedu Farming?

Jute farming is the process involved in the planting, nurturing and harvesting the jute (ewedu) plant for local consumption and commercial purposes. 

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Business opportunities Available In Jute Or Ewedu Farming

1). Food Production: 

The mature leaves can be cooked into soups which is best served with moulded starchy foods like garri, wheat, and so on. This is a popular dish in Nigeria, often served in various restaurants. The young leaves can also be added to salads while older leaves are cooked as a pot-herb.

2). Seasoning:

The dried leaves can be used as a thickener in soups. Leaves can be sun-dried, pounded to flour, then stored for a significant time.

3). Medicine Production:

Jute leaves are good sources of beta-carotene, which is a plant pigment that converts into vitamin A in the human body. It promotes good vision, stronger immunity and healthier skin. It is well utilized in medicines in most parts in Africa and the Middle East.

4). Textile Production: 

Jute or Ewedu serves as a source of lignin, which is a material of great importance in the textile industry.

5). Jute Bag Production:

Fibres of Jute are used in the production of jute bags which are used to bag agricultural products being shipped all over the world.

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Facts And Benefits Of Jute Or Ewedu Farming

  • Jute or Ewedu leaves are very rich in minerals, vitamins and anti-oxidants
  • Jute or Ewedu is a good source of fibre, which makes it helpful in weight management 
  • Jute improves intestinal health and bowel movement.
  • Jute or Ewedu is one of the most affordable natural fibres.
  • Jute or Ewedu is high in vitamin A and therefore, promotes eye health
  • Jute or Ewedu helps maintain good, healthy skin
  • Jute or Ewedu matures within 4 to 5 weeks after planting

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How To Start Jute Or Ewedu Farming In Nigeria: Step By Step Guide

1). Site Selection: 

Jute or Ewedu thrives better in a well-drained loamy soil that is rich in organic matter and receives moderate rainfall. The site should also be cleared and tilled to enable the plant roots to easily penetrate and for maximum growth and productivity.

2). Planting: 

A great benefit of Jute is that it can be planted at any time of the year, and the planting process is not too tasking. There are various methods of planting the seeds; ridges can be made in the soil and then the seeds planted, withing giving proper distancing between them. The seeds should be watered twice daily for adequate growth. It only takes a couple of weeks for jute or ewedu to mature.

3). Pest And Disease Control:

The jute or ewedu plant is vulnerable to disease infections and pest attacks. Pests like beetles, which attack the leaves and stem of the plant and even diseases like leaf spot, can both be controlled by the usage of organic pesticides.

4). Harvesting:

The plant is ready for harvesting within five weeks, and this can be done by cutting the stem or uprooting the entire plant. Jute or Ewedu can continue to produce severally but stops when there are no more leaves on it.

5). Storage:

Jute or Ewedu is naturally a perishable plant and needs to be used immediately. If it has to be preserved, it can be dried and crushed. It can also be preserved longer in its natural state, and this could be done by sprinkling water or storing it in a cold environment to prevent dehydration.

6). Marketing: 

The jute or ewedu market is one that always has a ready demand ahead of supply; therefore sales won’t be difficult, but with the right approach a vendor can fully maximize profits

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Challenges of Jute Or Ewedu Farming In Nigeria

Here are some challenges that can affect starting a jute or ewedu farming in Nigeria, Africa, or many other places around the world:

  • Jute or Ewedu is easily perishable
  • Jute or Ewedu is overlooked as a large scale production unit
  • Pest and diseases
  • Lack of government support
  • Lack of funding for large scale production
  • Lack of a highly favourable market
  • Lack of highly equipped storage facilities 
  • Lack of efficient production mechanisms
  • Not popularly known
  • Absence of a vast ready market
  • Poor funding of research activities
  • Bush burning
  • Lack of capital for large scale production
  • Lack of easy access to the international market
  • Lack of adequate widespread knowledge on how to produce high-quality products
  • Lack of funds to import international standard processing machinery
  • Thieves and criminals

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To Sum It Up

The jute or ewedu farming business in Nigeria can be a lucrative and profitable venture to start-up, due to its vast market demand and on your own ability to build a wide supply chain network. If you’re looking for a farming business to venture into, the jute or ewedu farming business in Nigeria is a great option to explore.

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