GFAR blog

YAP Proposal #52: “Reducing Post-Harvest Losses” (John Agboola, Nigeria)

Value Addition for locust bean and Carrot
Value Addition for locust bean and Carrot

Value addition! How sweet for agric products…

Since my childhood days till 25 years, I have been engaged in farming activities. This captivated my interest to the extent of obtaining a degree in agricultural economic and extension from the Federal University of Technology, Akure (FUTA). Since I was a child, many of my spare time has been used to engage in farming and with farmers. Recently, the agricultural transformation agenda has encourage me to not only to work with farmers but to help more youth get involved in Agriculture and employ the use of social media to promote Agriculture and its benefits.

I have observed that value addition to products increases its prices hence the profit from them. Being a city with one of the largest population in Nigeria and Africa, Lagos would be the target for this business as it is the home of business both commercial and small scale ventures. Based on my observation on lifestyle of the working class, traders and the environment in line with food consumption, adding values such as cleaning and bagging farm products in attractive and handy packs is being proposed. Currently, handling of vegetables and fruits has exposed them to elements of weather and germs and the target population are people on the go with little time to clean vegetables properly. A properly packaged handy vegetable that is ready for eating or cooking with little or no hassles is therefore highly desired.

The project aims to help the farmers of locust beans, leafy vegetables and carrots earn more by reducing their losses through proper post-harvest activities including value addition. This will enable them through mentoring and proper training to target the high end market that possess the means to pay for this service. This apart from increasing farmers profit will also reduce post-harvest losses and quick perishability of these products. The method to be employed will be to buy-off products in large quantities from farmers, this would enable them strictly focus on production. The aggregated products would then packed and marketed. As time goes on, farmers into this will be supported to grow products using improved seeds/seedlings and modern farm technologies to ensure adequate yield and productivity.

The initial products to be targeted will be Locust beans, carrot and leafy vegetables. Locust beans is one of the ingredients that is used to make soup in Nigeria. This makes the product more competitive in the market and it has positive penetration. The beans will be sourced in large quantity and initially sun-dried with the addition of salt for preservation and then packed in sealable packs which will be obtained from supermarkets and also safe to obtain from the open markets.

For carrots, it will be bought in large quantity, wash and scrape to remove the outer layer which mostly discourage people from buying the product from the open market and packed into sealable nylon. Some will be sold whole as snack and the other will be diced and sliced for cooking. The processed carrots will also be packed and supplied to high-end markets. Leafy vegetables are part of basic meals in Nigeria used as main meals, soups or to garnish meals.

The project will source for them, pluck its leaves, wash, cut and pack them in attractive packs of sealable nylon as this will saves the users some cooking time and more family time. Some will also be dried and packed for the export market for Nigerians in the diaspora. Also, an online marketing platform called “BabaAgro”, an agro market hub, will be created for buyers and sellers of these products to interact.

The realistic and sustainability of the project lies in the fact that agriculture will continue to thrives as long as humans exist. More so, the online platform will increase revenue and encourage more sectors such as information technology, telecommunication sectors to support Agriculture. The project will benefit three categories of people – the farmers, especially women who are the major producer of the targeted produce, the consumers that intend to maintain good health condition and consume well packaged food items and finally employ more youth as the business expand its scope of operation. As part of it benefit, the project will provide improved seeds/seedlings and necessary agribusiness training for farmers and youth as the project gets established.

Budget Description

The US $5000 will cover the following fixed and operating cost for period of 2 years: Office space/shop rent (US $502 for 2 years); purchase of agricultural produce from farmers (US $1807 for 1 year); transportation cost – from buyer to location and intra movement within the location of operation (US $1205 for 1 year); equipment, materials and branding (US $652 for 1year); labor cost (US $542 for 1 year); NAFDAC registration for the target product (US $201) and miscellaneous expenses (US $60 for 1year).

The project long vision will ensure a catalytic approach of farmers to the trending scientific innovations in agriculture and youth to agriculture and its agribusiness through training, workshop and seminars on business start-up and management.

Blogpost and picture submitted by John Agboola (Nigeria) – john.agboola.o(at)

The content, structure and grammar is at the discretion of the author only.

This post is published as proposal #52 of “YAP” – our “Youth Agripreneur Project”.

The first selection of the winners will be based on the number of comments, likes and views each proposal gets.

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“YAP” is part of the #GCARD3 process, the third Global Conference on Agricultural Research for Development.

253 thoughts on “YAP Proposal #52: “Reducing Post-Harvest Losses” (John Agboola, Nigeria)”

  1. This is great! Post-harvest studies will be brought to the forefront with this project. People will see the value it can add to the product, plus it helps conserve the food longer. Kudos, John!

  2. This is great stuff Mr. John. Post harvest storage is the major bane of agricultural produce in Nigeria If this project is well executed as proposed,it will greatly mitigate the loss of of our agricultural produce.

  3. I knew you have what it takes to achieve this and on this note I pray God will give you effortless testimony on it. more grace friend

  4. I have always been looking forward to seeing an end been put to the wastage of agricultural produce. Thumbs up Mr John! This is what we need to improve the dwindling economy as a contribution from the agricultural sector.

  5. Good work Mr. John. As major part of the crop’s value is lost after harvesting, the technology like yours will certainly help to address the losses bring quality food to the consumers table with value addition.

  6. This is great. Post-harvest losses have been a major problem in Nigeria. It will be great if this project gets sponsored.

    May I ask? Who will manage the “BabaAgro” platform? Is it a new platform or an existing one?

  7. Brillant proposal written by John, I believe through you and i Nigeria agricultural market will be valued by the Government.

  8. Agboola, I appreciate your interest and contribution to agriculture. But I have some futuristic opinions for this idea from my own perspective:
    #1 Your leafy vegetables must be blanched, you can decide the type of blanching as this depends on the type of vegetable. Blanching must be mild to avoid loss of nutrients, and packaging must be air-tight to avoid quick deterioration, and the packaged product must be stored properly, cold storage isn’t bad.
    #2 The carrot can be sliced into chips and stored in cold environment. You can check Google for Pomes fries, or better still French fries, you can work with some Food Scientists and see if they can process carrot to become fryable or microwavable or oven-fryable after long cold storage. Remember, malls can provide freezers for your products, I do see imported vegetables in malls and grocery stores here in Lagos, but you are a potential threat to such importers. #valueaddition
    #3 Locust beans is a wonderful recipe, I so much enjoy it when cooked with my stew or vegetable soup “winks”. Packaging is all is needed for Locust beans.

    Thumbs up bro.

  9. John, I commend the thinking that has gone into this. Post-harvest losses have graduated into post-harvest waste in our clime. Well done for this solution.

  10. Nice initiative from you,this will not only make farm produce save for consumption, it will also bring about new ways of packaging our farm produce.

  11. This is a wonderful masterpiece.. . I haven’t for once underestimated your capabilities…. I am sure this proposal will fly as I am very sure that you have plenty stuffs to offer….. Keep the flag flying…… Oke Adedamola Temitayo FUTA

  12. Nice one brother I must recommend you on a job well done God will help you on this journey

  13. Farming can be more profitable if farmers have access to post harvest facilities to reduce wastages. Since this idea is coming from a young farmer who has gathered a lot of experience through learning and practice in such a short time, reducing post harvest losses will help elevate the socioeconomic status of farmers who are mostly likened to poverty in our societies.

  14. This is brilliant. Your sustainability plan should be well elaborate and properly mapped out

  15. this is a job well done.. i’m wowed
    it is time we make use of this
    greater height

  16. My wonderful friend this is a lovely piece, kudos to you for the great work, however i would love to know how you intend to cater for publicity of the project? and the ‘BabaAgro’ is an awesome platform to start with, this is where IT weds Agriculture *smile*, Agriculture is the next big thing as long as you are ready to give your all, I see another opportunity in you being able to align your interest with big food stores e.g foodco, shoprite and co in addition to the existing plan…GREAT WORK.

    1. Thank you very much Emmanuel..Plans are sketched already for the publicity of the project which i will not unfold for now but the ICT weds Agric will bring to lime-light the beauty of the BabaAgro. Thank you my ICT expert and i hope you are picturing the development of a web and mobile app for this project..*smiles

  17. It has been estimated that large percentage of agric produce especially crops are wasted to ill post harvest handling in Nigeria. And this is one of the major reasons that lead to the unattractiveness of the Agric sector, especially to youth. Kudos to Mr John for this feasible plan. Babaagro weldone.

  18. John I told a friend recently how accurate you are in writing feasibility report for businesses not knowing you have already put together a great proposal like this.great work

  19. This is absolutely wonderful. We need people with this mindset to set our country back to her track. Good job bro

  20. Mr John have known you to be hardworking, brilliant, diligent and intelligent. This is a wonderful business idea from an agri-business consultant. Kudos to u bro

  21. John, storage is a major challenge to agricultural produce. studies should be undertaken in this area and lasting solution proffered. if the project is properly executed, there will be light at the end of the tunnel. well-done

  22. I sincerely see agriculture as the major means of survival in the world, I also believe in your idea which I will quickly want to put to you that I situation like Nigeria that the economy is unstable with regards to market value, how do you intend to cope with this fluctuations.

    Best regards.

  23. This is great. Value addition, youth in agriculture, reduced post-harvest loss, increased nutritional status! I see great potential in this project.

  24. I love this project but will like to ask some questions. In the prevention of post harvest losses, what are the basics to be done to preserve the quality of the produce cos what I see here is majorly on packaging, branding (though the materials will be packed as soon as possible to avoid wastage). The quality matters a lot.
    Keep the good work coming… And your response is highly needed.
    Am happy for your work

    1. Thanks Olayiwola. Since the project is not financially capable to purchase preserving technology for now, the plans is to sun-dry most of the product excluding carrot. But the issues of concern is the vegetables which most people enjoy the freshness aspect…this might be refrigerated and the foresight is to ensure that the product, especially for vegetable is sold to the target market that same day. Any additions from you will also be highly appreciated. Thanks man

  25. Innovative!!!!! Vegetables can still stay fresh for a week if properly sealed. I plucked somes leaves (Efo and Scent leaf) from my farm, selead it and I have been observing them till today. They’re still okay.

    All the best.

  26. post harvest losses reduces quality and quantity of food produce. I love this proposal as it will reach the demand of our ever increasing population. Mr John, I would like to ask that is there any implication using genetically modified food or resistant varieties as the food produce (Locust beans and Carrots ) in this concept you’ve explained. bro thanks for the initiative as it will provide jobs for the working population.

  27. u are such a person who mostly concern about d gud living of ppl in d community. Highest ground is urs!

  28. Fertilizer is indeed very important for farmers for effective productivity..Good one dear John

  29. John..Right from school you have always shown your passion for agriculture and always wanting to help others..I must commend your effort on this project.

  30. Great Project

    Congratulations, I support this fully
    Value addition will also help agripreneurs see greater value and reward in Agriculture.
    Wish you the best

  31. Nice proposal here Mr John as this will serve d ever increasing demand for these produce in Lagos. I would like to know from you Mr John if there is any implication of using genetically modified food or resistant varieties as the food produce ( Locust beans and Carrots ) to be preserved and processed. I love this write up as this establishment will also provide employment to our working population.

  32. Mr John, your proposed project is a very good one in the sense that vegetables will be circulated round the Lagos since it would be packed. More Grace

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