How To Start A Rice Business In Nigeria
Published On:December 3, 2021

This is the most complete guide on how to start a rice business in Nigeria.

How to Start a Rice Business in Nigeria and Make Millions within a few years is very possible when some necessary criterias are met. First off how can the rice business make you a millionaire, Rice is a staple food which is eaten all over the world and for this reason it has high demand both in the international market and national market.

Nigeria is one of the highest consumers of rice and with a population of more than 180 million makes it is a great location to start a rice business and it also stands as an advantage for any entrepreneur who is Keen on starting a rice business in Nigeria.

Some advantages of starting a rice business in Nigeria are:

  • Suitable for small and big enterprenuers
  • Demand for rice is extremely high in Nigeria
  • Highly profitable
  • Long storage capacity

Types Of Rice Business In Nigeria

How to start a rice business in Nigeria

One thing you need to know on how to start a Rice business in Nigeria is that just like any other rice business in Nigeria has different types of models which you can venture into depending on your capital. Here are the different models of rice business in Nigeria:

  • Rice farming business in 
  • Rice milling business in Nigeria
  • Rice wholesale business in Nigeria
  • Rice retail business in Nigeria

Rice Farming Business In Nigeria

This model of rice business involves planting and harvesting rice bans for sale. This is very common in many states in Nigeria but the locally produced rice is not sufficient to satisfy the extremely high demand for rice in Nigeria.

Anyone starting this type of rice farm business in Nigeria is at an advantage because currently, the Nigerian government has implemented different strategies in stopping the inflow of foreign rice, also many agricultural institutions in Nigeria also support farms with necessary equipment and loans so as to encourage farming in Nigeria while simultaneously developing the economy.

The Rice farming business in Nigeria is indeed a very good model to make money from but it may require large capital and is sometimes not suitable for small entrepreneurs.

Some tips to consider you looking for How to start a rice farming business in Nigeria

    To start a successful rice farming business in Nigeria, the selection of the land you will use in planting the rice is of paramount importance. If you intend Using a particular land for rice farming for a long time, it is ideal you select a site in places where rice is grown traditionally. Some states in Nigeria where rice are grown traditionally are: Kebbi, Borno, Kano and Kaduna states in the North; Enugu, Ebonyi state and Cross River states in the South; Taraba and Benue states for the middle belt zone. Ensure you make a soil survey and research your land to avoid any risk. Choose lands that contain organic matter like loamy soil or swampy area which have high in water retention capacity.
    Rice farms are prepared for rice farming between the months of November to February. At this time the raining season has ended so you’ll have less rain which would get the land ready for rice farming at February, when the raining season starts to emerge, Preparing the land for rice production will involve clearing and packing bushes, hoeing and weeding also Level the land to avoid erosion and apply fertilizer.
    There are different kind of rice in Nigeria. Choosing the right kind of rice will determine our harvest rate and profit.
    In a forest area, rice are normally planted from the middle of March to the middle of April after the rain has fallen three times. In the savannah area (extreme northeast), rice are planted in middle of May to middle of June.
    You can either plant directly on the farm or plant first in the nursery then transplant it to the farm, whatever way you choose doesn’t matter. But If you choose to plant directly, ensure you watch out for weeds and spray herbicides and pesticides to control it.
    You can either plant directly on the farm or plant first in the nursery then transplant it to the farm, whatever way you choose doesn’t matter. But If you choose to plant directly, ensure you watch out for weeds and spray herbicides and pesticides to control it.
    Apply fertilizers appropriately, most fertilizer has application methods so you can acquire from the seller how to apply, so you won’t damage your farm.
    Weeding is very important in rice farming business in Nigeria, and can sometimes damage the farm when not done properly. The sooner it is done the better. The first weeding in rice farm must be done within 2 to 3 weeks after appearance. When weeding, use a hoe instead of a cutlass, so you won’t kill the rice plants. You can also control weed by using chemicals such as herbicide. The second weeding must be done about 6 to 7 weeks after appearance.
    Pests include Birds, rodents, termites, and wormsare all dangerous to rice farm, To control birds, employ people to watch over the farm in the first two weeks after planting, and when the time to harvest comes You can kill rodents with snap traps. You can also best Control termites by destroying all dead woods and plant deposits by burning.
    Harvesting of rice could start after 4 months when the rice has turned from color green to brown (straw colour) then you Know it’s ready. The process of removing the rice seeds is called threshing and you can do this using mechanical devices or wacking frames. Do not thresh on a bare floor so it won’t get mixed with sand. It is better to Thresh on a mat or tarpaulin over the concrete floor by beating rice against the floor, or against a stick or drum. After harvesting rice, it is advisable to put in residues of rice back into the soil and also grow leguminous crops like beans, peas, lentils, soya, etc so as to help maintain soil nutrients for another planting season, this will also help in producing more quality and quantity harvest in the future.

Rice Milling Business In Nigeria

This model involves buying rice paddy from big farms, to process into bagged rice. When Rice is harvested it comes with a covering called paddy, although most farms remove this paddy before selling it out but some don’t because they prefer to sell it to rice milling factories so they can be processed into finished goods.
This model doesn’t need land or any that has to do with planting and harvesting rice but it requires huge machines to a trash rice paddy, select and remove rice chaff, parboil, and bag finished product.

Tips On Starting A Rice Milling Business In Nigeria

If you have sufficient capital you can buy the milling machines and start milling rice by yourself. But you have to undergo training from experienced millers or rice factories. Or you can pay millers to process the rice for you. A rice milling factory should have: modern equipment, Good knowledge in both parboiling and drying methods of processing rice, Good environmental conditions eg not a swampy area; this should be put into consideration.

Fact on Rice Milling Business in Nigeria: Local rice in Nigeria is healthier for consumption, Unlike foreign rice.

Packaging Of Rice In Bags:

Purchase good quality packaging bags, sacks or paper cartons that won’t tear when being used give to graphic designers to put good designs on the bag for you to make your products unique. Create a nice and unique name for your rice business and stamp the name on the bag.

When it comes to packaging, You can package them in different sizes such as quarter bag, ½ bag or full bag (50kg) so as to ease market penetration through segmentation. For example, the way brown rice sold in supermarkets are packaged in small quantities.

NOTE: small bags capture every class, the low, medium and high so they will sell faster than bigger ones. Besides most rice factories make use of 50kg bags to package their rice. only a few use small bags so you can carve a name for yourself by maintaining the use of small bags. This could also work as your branding system.

Marketing Of Rice Milling Business In Nigeria

Identify where your target market is and Know the best way to reach them. You can start your Supply to market traders, supermarkets, provision shops etc. Also Sale to family members, friends and neighbours will also work great. Take advantage of online/offline adverts like; social media (Facebook, Whatsapp, Instagram) etc. Get a branch shop or a warehouse opposite market, inside the market, in a busy commercial area or communities where no or few rice wholesalers are found.

Cost Of Paddy Rice In Nigeria

The processing of rice depends on your location, but from our latest research, it can be from #50-#100 per kilo. A ton (1000kg) will be 100×1000=100,000 the price is not fixed and it keeps fluctuating. At most, You will get 90%, raw rice from the processed rice paddy. Before now rice was #135,000 a ton and #16,000 for a bag. You can Buy paddy rice from rice farmers or as a commodity from dealers in the market.

The processes involved in the production of rice include:

  • Harvest the rice
  • Trash the paddy rice
  • Boil the paddy rice
  • Dry the paddy rice
  • Mill the paddy rice
  • After processing your rice paddy, you need to dry them where stones will not enter also if you have a rice de-toner it will improve your rice quality.

Rice Wholesale Business In Nigeria

Amongst all the rice businesses on this list, Rice wholesale business is the most common type of rice business in Nigeria and it is very suitable for young entrepreneurs who do not have intensive capital to go into rice milling business or in having and running a rice farming business.

This model involves buying a large quantity of bagged rice to sell in bits to retailers in the market. It also requires storage facilities like a warehouse to keep large amounts of rice. One advantage of starting this business is rice can last for up to 4 years so you have more than enough time to sell them.

How To Become A Rice Wholesaler In Nigeria

1. A Supplier-:

This should be a rice farm because as a wholesaler distributor, you’ll need to buy from a reliable source where you can get the rice in very large quantity and at the cheapest price possible so you’ll still make profits after removing the cost of logistics involved in getting the rice from the supplier to you who is the retailer.

2. Warehouse-:

You will definitely be needing a warehouse for the major purpose of storing your shipped rice.

3. Capital-:

To become a rice wholesale distributor, you need to buy in very large quantities from the rice farmers and sell in smaller bits to the retailers, and this will require Huge capital, so starting a rice distribution business can be a little bit capital intensive and capital is essential for any business.

4. Rice Retail:

Rice retail business in Nigeria is also similar to the rice wholesale business but the only difference is that you buy in small quantities and sell to final consumers. And of course, for this model you won’t need any warehouse or any huge facility to start, all you need is a shop, the right wholesalers and the right type of rice to buy.
This model requires small capital and it is ideal for beginners who want to start a rice business in Nigeria with very little capital.

Rice Business Plan In Nigeria

To successfully start any model of rice business in Nigeria you’ll need to get a rice business plan in Nigeria which will contain all you need to start a rice business in Nigeria and how to scale your business to any level.

A business plan contains the structure of how your business is formed and operate and without it, you might end up losing your investment. There is no such thing as luck in business so do your research and feasibility study to ensure you’re on the right path.

A business plan is the soul of any business and in any rice business you intend to set up, it is paramount to get a rice business plan in Nigeria before any other thing, some aspiring entrepreneurs overlook this which is very wrong, and that’s while a majority of them fail when they start because they don’t have a clear financial projection of their business before starting.

To save you time and money we at NaijaCEO have done intensive research and market survey to know what methods work best for each model of rice business in Nigeria. So all you have to do now is to get a business plan from us and start your business.

1. Executive Summary
2. Description of Problem and Solution
   2.2 Vision
   2.3 Mission
   2.4 Value Proposition
   2.5 Business Objectives
   2.6 Critical Success Factor
   2.7 Current Status of Business
   2.8 Legal Requirement
   2.9 Contribution to Local and National Economy
   2.10 Contribution to SDG

3. SWOT Analysis

4. Market Analysis

5. Competitive Analysis & Risk Analysis

6.  Marketing Plan
 6.1  Description of Product (S) or Service (S)
 6.2 Potential challenges in the business industry
 6.3The Opportunity
 6.4Target Market
 6.5Marketing and Sale Strategy

7 .Production Plan/Operational Plan
 7.1 Description of the Location/Factory
 7.2 Raw Materials/consumables
 7.3 Production Equipment/Capital Expenses
 7.4 Equipment/Depreciation Table
 7.5 Pricing strategy
 7.6 Record/Stock Control Process
 7.7 Pre-operating Activities and Expenses

8. Organization Structure and Responsibilities
 8.1 Salary Schedule

9. Financial Plan
 9.1 Start-Up Capital Estimation (Expansion Capital Estimation)
 9.2 Loan Details
 9.3 Business Risk and Mitigating Factor
 9.4 Financial Projections
 9.5 Sales Forecast And Sales Assumption
 9.6 Income Statement (P&L) Account
10. Conclusion

This is the structure of how your business plan should look so it will need lots of research and investigation which will take a lot of time before you can get accurate information with the ability to produce the desired result.

We have an already prepared rice business plan in Nigeria that has been used by lots of entrepreneurs to start their rice business successfully and even secure loans. If you are really interested in starting a rice business in Nigeria You can reach out to us for a comprehensive rice business plan in Nigeria.

PS: Cost For Getting A Rice Business Plan in Nigeria: N10,000


If you are really looking for how to start a rice business in Nigeria, I do hope this article is helpful, I want to let you know that the Rice business is indeed a multi-billion naira industry in the food industry in Nigeria but most of the market is under satisfied which leaves an open opportunity for any willing entrepreneur who is ready to invest.

In Nigeria eating rice is like drinking water and I can boldly say that every Nigerian eat rice at least once a month.

The demand for rice continues to rise daily and until we can fully satisfy the demand for rice independently then we can be proud of our agricultural inheritance.

Micah Erumaka

Micah Erumaka

About Micah Erumaka

Micah Erumaka is the Founder of LiaonCEM solutions which owns NaijaCEO. He is an Internet Entrepreneur and a content creator. After the failure of his first company at age 18 he started NaijaCEO to help entrepreneurs with the information they need in operating a successful business in Africa

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