YAM FARMING-Complete Beginners Guide

Yam is the common name for some plant species in the genus Dioscorea that form edible tubers. They are perennial herbaceous vines cultivated for the consumption of their starchy tubers in many temperate and tropical world regions.

The West African region cultivates 90% of the yam produced in the whole world and Nigeria alone produces about 68% making it the highest yam producers in the world.

Available Varieties of Yam

The available varieties of yams in West Africa are:
– Discorea alata (Water Yam)
– Discorea builfera (Aerial Yam)
– Discorea dumentorum (Sweet Yam)
– Discorea rotunda (White Yam)
– Discorea cayenesis (Yellow Yam)

Yam is considered the most important food staple in West Africa where 90% of the total yams produced worldwide comes from.

Every year, festivals and rituals are carried out in different parts of the region to mark the arrival of the new yam. Apart from these festivals and rituals, there is huge profit in yam farming business.

Read Also: Yam Flour Production and Packaging

Below are the required information’s on how to cultivate your yam successfully.

Soil requirement: well drained clayey loam

Method of propagation: Seed yam (whole tuber) or cutting of yam tuber about 250gms

Date of planting: November-December (early yam), March-April (late yam)

Spacing: 90cm apart on top of mound and staggered in alternate rows

Number of propagation per hole: 1

Planting depth: Cover tuber with about 5cm soil layer. Then cover ridge or mound with grass mulch

Maturity period: 8-9months

Method of harvesting: Tuber is carefully dug out of the soil with the aid of sharp tool e.g. cutlass or spade

Storage: –Tubers are tied up in barns

-In form of dried peeled tubers

-In form of flour

Marketing: Sold locally

Uses: -Eaten cooked

-Cooked and pounded

Related: 50 Business Ideas for Aspiring Entrepreneurs on Agriculture

YAM FARMING-Complete Beginners Guide
Yam Farm

Yam is consumed almost everywhere in the world, but this particular food is considered popular in Africa. In Nigeria, yam farming was what sustained the economy until oil was discovered.

In Nigeria, Yam farming is cultivated and popular in almost every state of the country as farmers who engage in this kind of farming either sell their yams for money or use it for feeding.

Either ways, Yam farming business is a lucrative one which is sure to yield you profit.

I wonder why we keep overlooking this very important farming business opportunity.

Five hundred by five hundred meters size of farmland could yield you 50,000 tubers of yam which is valued at N10 million ($50,000) at one dollars per yam.

This is a golden opportunity for any serious farmer who would like to take advantage of this season to cultivate yam in large quantity.

Apart from selling locally, yam can be exported to the United States of America, United Kingdom, Netherlands, France, Germany, and even Japan.

While Nigeria is the major producer of yam in the world followed by Ivory Coast, Ghana is in the other hand the major exporter of yams, accounting for over 90% of total yams exported from West Africa annually.

Production and the use efficiency of inputs usually decline with increased input quantities, because costs increase and the biological or physiological use efficiency eventually levels out or decline.

Most yams are grown after long bush fallow leading to high cost for land clearing, subsequent nutrient losses at biomass burning, labor intensive tillage and mounding and costs related to the procurement of stakes.

Furthermore, seed yams are expensive and often of poor quality and, later on during the season, weed control, prevention of rodent damage and theft are additional cost factors in the production chain of yam.

To increase the long-term profitability of yam production, it is thus important to determine which of the major production factors can contribute to sustainable yield increases without compromising the natural resource base.

Five hundred by five hundred meters size of farmland could yield you 50,000 tubers of yam which is valued at N10 million ($50,000) at one dollars per yam.

This is a golden opportunity for any serious farmer who would like to take advantage of this season to cultivate yam in large quantity.

Apart from selling locally, yam can be exported to the United States of America, United Kingdom, Netherlands, France, Germany, and even Japan.

While Nigeria is the major producer of yam in the world followed by Ivory Coast, Ghana is in the other hand the major exporter of yams, accounting for over 90% of total yams exported from West Africa annually.

Why have Nigeria, Ivory Coast, and Cameroon not been fully involved in the exportation of yams, leaving the opportunity only in the hands of Ghana?

Therefore I encourage you to start your yam farming right away, make enough profit through its sales as well as exporting to other countries to enhance your reach.

Read Also: Health Benefits of Pounded Yam

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