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How to Start Cassava Exporting from Nigeria

Nigeria is currently ranked one of the top producers of cassava globally, therefore it is expected that cassava exporting from Nigeria one of the export business people can engage in.

As of 2017, it is estimated that Nigeria produced over 47million tonnes of cassava annually, making it a lucrative as export business.

Therefore if you are thinking of which export business to engage in but you not quite sure, then looking into the cassava exporting industry can be a good option.

 

There are many reasons for this. One is the fact that cassava is our thing is Nigeria; so finding suppliers will not be difficult. Cassava is also in high demand in various countries outside our shores, therefore, finding an exporting partner is also not difficult.

 

There are many reasons for the demand for cassava. One reason for that is the fact that cassava is used as a source of different kinds of food and even livestock feeds.

 

Cassava also serves as raw material in the industry for the production of products like dextrose lactose and adhesive bakery products among others. Again, it is used in for the production of drugs and cosmetics as well as a source of energy for some people.

 

For Nigeria, any export of any kind is good for the economy because it will increase the circulation of foreign currency and be useful for stabilizing our Naira.

So anyway we look at it, cassava exportation is a good business for you and the country as a whole.
However, just like every other venture that one engages in, there are procedures that will make your journey easier. There are certain things to you have to do if you want to be an exporter of cassava in Nigeria.

The first thing you need to do is research. The internet is a good place to start but it is not enough. You need to go to the market as well to see how it is done practically. One effective way you can do this is interned with someone who is already in the business.

You can work for free if they are not willing to pay, after all, you simply need knowledge. However, the internet is also a good place to learn. You can find consultants who give import business training to as many as are interested. Before you even start at all, it is important to have all the knowledge available, so you have an idea of everything it entails; capital, human resources, intricacies, legal aspect and contacts.

The next thing is capital. It is unnecessary to talk about how important it is to have your capital down because what business is there that can survive without capital.

 

There are different ways to get capital for your business.

 

• Of course, the first obvious option is your savings. Most times, before people go into business, they take time to have gathered enough from their personal income. The only most reliable person to finance your business is yourself.

• Another good option is your family and friends. They are the next set of people who know you and can be willing to take a risk on you. Of course, in most cases, you would have to have proved yourself to be a reliable person and worth the risk. If your family know you as a flighty or inconsistent person, they might not be as willing to help out. So it is important that your reputation with your family is untainted before you even go outside.

• Loans are another good way to source for funds. But whatever you do, make sure it is minimal. Don’t go overboard with getting loans. There are government loans and organizations that give loans to businesses or even investors who are looking for where to put their money. You will have to convince all of these people by writing a business proposal in some cases or just pleading your case.

• Before considering loans, you could apply for grants from the government or non-governmental organizations that are into all these.

 

Then, you will need to register your business. In order to have credibility both in and out of the country, your business has to be government-registered. With the number of fraud trending these days, the foreigners will not take you seriously if you do not have the stamp of the government.

 

So to get started, you need to find a unique name and register with the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC). They are the body responsible for registering businesses in Nigeria. The reason you need your business name to be unique is that they will reject a business name that is already in existence.

 

In order to avoid back and forth with CAC, think of the name or even do your own research on the internet to find if the name you are gunning for exists. Then you need an office address; it could be your house address but it must be an address that exists physically.

 

When you are done with CAC, you need to also register with the Nigerian Export Promotion Council (NEPC) because your business is an exporting business.

 

The NXP form will be required by the Nigerian Customs Service. You are expected to register this form with a bank to set up and maintain a domiciliary account for you where your payments will be deposited.

 

You will need to obtain all the necessary licenses and permits required by the government. These documents are also important in determining your credibility to your buyers. You will need a good lawyer to guide you in all you need.
You will also need to obtain licenses from the country you plan to sell to.

 

The country will likely need to inspect your products to make sure they meet their standards, so research their standards, make sure all round your cassava is of standard and research all the country will require you to get before you can start exporting to their country.

 

When all the legal aspects, licenses and permits are gotten, then you need to find your supplier(s). There are a good number of suppliers who also have farms, so they produce the cassava they export.

 

You can also do that if you have the resources. If not, you can go into the villages to find suppliers of standard cassava at an affordable price. You can also have more than one supplier to be safer to have a higher quantity when you get more demands.

 

Then, you need to find buyers. This is one aspect that many people find difficult. The internet has made things a lot easier. You can research for buyers of cassava in different countries. However, many have been victims of fraud and you would want to save yourself that. Here are some ways you can find buyers for your business.

 

• As mentioned earlier, you can find buyers on the internet. Sites like alibaba.com have a number of people who register interest of buying cassava. So you can try them. You can also simply just search for buyers on Google. However, make sure you do proper research on the companies or buyers who reach out to you or you find. Watch out for their email address; serious companies usually have company email and not the personal email address. Check their scam reports on the internet. You can type the name of the company and type scam with it, it will bring it out if there is any scam report about them because usually, you are not the first person. Research their activities to see if they are legit. All these will reduce your chances of being scammed.

 

 

• You can also advertise on the internet either by having a website or advertising on a forum, so when buyers research, they can find you.

 

• You can find buyers through an agent. There are many export agency companies who serve as a middleman between buyers and sellers, so you can check them out. They will increase your expenditure but it is usually a small price to pay. You can also use someone you have in the country you want to export to or have a partner in the other country.

 

• If you have enough money, you can travel to the country you wish to export to and scout the environment yourself as well to find buyers. Speaking to them personally will go a long way as well.

• Another option is attending trade fairs. Attending international trade fairs will help you find buyers and speak to them personally, so it is a good option to consider. That is also why it is necessary to register with NEPC. They usually organize fairs , where buyers and sellers can meet and register,will give you a pass to attend and advertise yourself to potential buyers.

 

When you have found your buyer(s) and discussions have been finalized, always remember that quality is very important to these foreigners. As much as possible don’t compromise on quality. Don’t cut down quality because of more profit, at the end of the day, you will be doing your business more harm than good.

 

Also make sure you package them properly so they can reach the destination in good form. The usual packing materials are sacks of cotton, multi-craft paper bags or clean jute bags.

 

This information is for you to get started as a cassava exporter in Nigeria. Knowledge is very important in any business and the above information will go a long way in helping you get started.

 

Learn how you can start cassava exporting in Nigeria, at 3timpex, the leading business export company in Nigeria

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About the Author

Bamidele Ayemibo is the lead consultant at 3T Impex Trade Academy

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