Tangerine is orange-coloured citrus and a variety mandarin orange which belongs in the family of Citrus reticulata. The taste of tangerine is less sour and sweeter than orange. More so, it has softer covering which is easy to peel by hand. Tangerine is cultivated in tropical and semi-tropical areas worldwide for its juicy and sweet fruits. Tangerine trees are frost and a drought-tolerant group of citrus trees. They can withstand all kinds of weather condition, but the developing fruits could be damaged by severe cold.
The global production rate of tangerine is about 21 million metric tonnes, most of which are produced for fresh market consumption. China, Spain and Japan are at the forefront of tangerine production, with the Spanish seedless Tangerine being the most demanded all around the world.
Nigeria’s production of all citrus fruits amounts to about 6 million metric tonnes annually, but tangerines account for only about 10% of this number. The Tangerine production in Nigeria is greatly hampered by inadequate storage equipment, and tangerine has a very short shelf life, leading to substantial losses and wastage every harvest season. Also, the low and inconsistent pricing discourages farmers from producing the fruit.
Tangerine farming is still a very lucrative business in Nigeria and Africa at large. It is less capital intensive. More so, tangerines can grow on almost any soil and can yield fruits for up to 10 years without further efforts on the part of the farmers. If you’re considering delving into tangerine farming, you will find a detailed guide here.
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What Is Tangerine?
Tangerine is an orange coloured citrus believed to be a hybrid of mandarin orange. Tangerines are smaller and much easier to peel than common oranges.
What Is Tangerine Farming?
Tangerine Farming refers to the general process involved in the production of tangerine, from seed selection to planting of seeds, to nurturing of the tree, and eventual harvesting of the tangerine fruits.
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Business Opportunities Associated With Tangerine Farming
1). Tangerine Oil Production:
Tangerine oil is known for its antifungal and antiseptic properties, making it a popular ingredient in skincare formulas. It’s an excellent remedy for acne and skin impurities. The tangerine essential oil also works for hair due to its antiseptic constituents. It is useful for treating dandruff, dry scalp and other scalp infections.
2). Source Of Medicine:
Tangerine is rich in Vitamin C and folate, which contain antioxidant substances useful for medicinal functions.
3). Juice Production:
Worldwide, tangerine is a major fruit used for the production of citrus juice, thanks to its sweet taste and juicy content.
4). Jam and Marmalade Production:
Tangerines are also used in the production of marmalade and jam because of their sweet taste.
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Fact and Benefits Of Tangerine
- One serving size of tangerine provides a full day’s supply of Vitamin C.
- Tangerine is an antioxidant
- Tangerine is an excellent source of folate that strengthens the red blood cells.
- Tangerine contains the same amount of potassium as a banana.
- Tangerine lowers the chances of high blood pressure and stroke.
- Tangerine can counteract infections that cause childhood fevers by replacing lost minerals and providing the body with more strength.
- Intake of Tangerine promotes the body’s defence mechanism.
- Tangerine fruits contain anticarcinogenic properties which help to fight cancer-causing agents.
- A study revealed that certain compounds known as polymethoxylated flavones available in the peel of tangerine help to reduce blood cholesterol.
- Tangerine has ample amounts of fibre which is a non-nutritive component required for a healthy digestive system.
- China, Spain, Brazil, Turkey and Egypt are leaders in global tangerine production
- The name ‘tangerine’ was derived from Tangier, a port in Morocco.
- Japan and China have been cultivating tangerines for well over 3000 years
- The tangerine tree is the smallest of all the citrus fruits trees.
- Benue, Nassarawa, Kogi and Taraba states are some of the biggest producers of tangerine in Nigeria.
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Types Of Tangerine
There are three major varieties of tangerine. They are:
Clementines are small sweet and seedless tangerines, also known as the Algerian Tangerine. The skin is thinner than that of regular tangerines. Clementines are known for their sweet-tasting juice. They are commonly used for cooking and preparation of marmalade and jam.
Tangelos are crossbreeds of pomelo and tangerine. The name tangelo is derived from the combination of the words pomelo and “tangerine.” It is easy to mistake a tangelo for oranges, but they have a unique shape, like a bell, which is different from the perfectly round shapes of oranges. Tangelos are also relatively smaller than oranges.
Temples are also known as the royal mandarin. They are hybrid fruits of oranges and tangerines. Temples look more like a small orange than a large tangerine. They are delicious and incredibly juicy and sweet. Temples taste more like oranges than tangerines.
How To Start Tangarine Farming In Nigeria: Step-By-Step Guide
1). Choose A Suitable Site:
The tangerine fruit can grow in basically any kind of soil and does not need much of soil nutrient nor excess soil moisture to grow. It grows best in a warm temperate environment with mild rainfall.
2). Choose The Best Seedling:
There are different types of tangerine, so when planting, it is best to choose the variety of tangerine that grows well in your area you, and the best hybrid seed available.
Tangerine is best planted from budded tangerine plants. Budded plants yield much more than seedlings, grow faster and are less prone to pests and diseases.
This is best done at the beginning of the raining season. Plant in planting holes of about 25cm x 18cm, which have been prepared beforehand. When planting the tangerine tree, cover half part of the hole with a rich manure, add the young plant and then cover with soil. Note that tangerine trees have deep roots, and the branches spread far. Planting space of about 10 to 15 feet is, therefore, required when planting. It is also necessary to fence the tangerine farm to prevent the young tree from goats or trampling.
The tangerine plants take about two years before they start producing fruits. In the first year, they produce only a few fruits. With time, the fruits continue to increase. The Tangerine fruit is considered ripe when the body of the fruit is totally or almost orange in coloured.
Challenges Of Tangerine Farming Business In Nigeria
- Inadequate funding
- Tangerine has a short shelf life, and this results in massive damage
- Inconsistent pricing of the fruits
- Inadequate government support in policy formulation
- Lack of government assistance such as subsidising the supply of seedlings
- The market competition between concentrates and tangerine fruits.
- Difficulty in transporting the fruits to areas of demand due to bad road conditions
- Reduced qualities of fruits, especially the traditional varieties
- Lack of storage facilities to store and preserve the fruits before processing which leads to a considerable loss.
- Lack of organised farmers and marketing system that ensure sustainable production, marketing and processing of fruits.
- Inadequate support from the government to grow, market, store and process fruits and insufficient infrastructural facilities and integrated packaging requirement.
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To Sum It Up
Tangerine farming is an open business potential. Thanks to its multiple uses, tangerine is in high demands across the country and globally. More so, a tangerine farm is a lifetime investment since tangerine trees can keep producing fruits for as much as 30 years.
The tangerine production business in Nigeria can be a lucrative and profitable venture to start-up, due to its vast market demand and on your ability to build a wide supply chain network. If you’re looking for a supply chain business to venture into, the tangerine business in Nigeria is a great option to explore.
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