My name is Adewole Adedamola, a graduate of microbiology. I am 22 and currently undergoing my agricultural incubation programme at the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture under the Youth Agripreneurs programme.
I am a young Nigerian who is interested in the nutrition of and job creation for Africans especially Young Africans, starting with my country.
Food security is a major problem in Nigeria and I am very interested in growing vegetables since there is a limited supply of fresh vegetables in the market.
Growing vegetables is a very important way of putting an end to malnutrition in Africa. Consuming vegetables is part of an overall healthy diet because it reduces the risk of diseases.
Vegetables are very rich and cheap source of vitamin A (for good eyes and skin), Vitamin C (healing of wounds), valuable roughage that aids digestion, Potassium (reduction of blood pressure), folic acid (formation of red blood cells), mineral salts and other chemicals.
Vegetables are low in fat and have no cholesterol (except sauces, seasonings or spices).
Growing vegetables provides more yields which thus improve food productivity. They are easy to grow, have short life span and can be grown all through the year.
Growing vegetables will employ youths from the point of sowing to marketing. Growing vegetables will provide regular source of income, since the yield per acre is high thus, eliminating unemployment.
Why support growing vegetables?
Vegetables are very fragile, and thus, perishable goods. The way vegetables are sold by local sellers can discourage the consumption of vegetables. Many times, the vegetables sold have reduced nutritional quality due to lack of storage facilities and this affects the palatability.
To solve this problem, I have found a need to improve the way vegetables are cultivated and sold.
Good agronomical practices (pest- and disease-free vegetables), immediate transportation of harvested vegetables, and proper storage of vegetables in cold storage barn (which will keep it fresh for a long period of time).
For a start, I am currently under an incubation programme, where vegetable production is one of the enterprises I have learnt.
This way, fresh vegetables will be available for sale and consumption, it will generate income for me, it will provide employment for five people for a start including myself, and over time, as the business grows, job creation will be expanded.
Monitoring and evaluation system will be used to guide the decision making process. The growth of the business (productivity and employability which are the goals of the enterprise) will also serve as measures.
How will I use the USD 5,000?
- Cold storage barn USD 2,600
- Land lease- 1ha/1yr USD 15
- Land clearing/1yr USD 50
- Cost of Inputs/1yr USD 1,000
- Transportation and Logistics/2 months USD 50
- Management practices/2months USD 200
- Labor (5)/2months USD 1,000
- Electricity/2months USD 85
After two months, fresh vegetables will be harvested and sold to continue the cycle of vegetable production.
However, cost of transportation and logistics, management practices, labour and electricity will be factored from the profit from the first harvest for the subsequent two months
Help me to nourish Nigerians, generate income and employ youths through vegetable production.
Blogpost and picture submitted by Adewole Adedamola (Nigeria): mailto:adewole_damola[at]yahoo.com
The content, structure and grammar are at the discretion of the author only.
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