Apart from the oil and gas industry and the technology industry, the agricultural industry is the third most viable industry in the world, especially since the emergence of new technological innovations that have helped facilitate the food production process. There is always a market for the food you produce, as long as the people there are familiar with the food.
But for this article, I will focus more on growing rice and how to start your own rice farm; since rice is a very common food all over the world, you can be sure that there is a variable market for your rice products. Before we talk about the steps needed to start a rice-growing business, I will mention some factors that you need to put in place before you can usefully manage your rice farm.
4 Factors to Consider Before Starting a Successful Rice-Growing Business
- Land space: If you are a commercial rice grower, you need a large amount of land for cultivation; a fallow field land should be an ideal business land; you need at least 10 acres to start commercial quantity production. In addition, the land must be easily accessible to facilitate the transport of finished products to the end users.
- Capitalization: The rice-growing business is a capital-intensive business; you need cash to lease or buy several acres of land to be used for the business. Cash is also needed to lease machinery for cultivation and harvesting, and also to build a silo or warehouse for storage of rice before the finished product is sold to wholesalers or the final consumer.
- Irrigation system: Rice is best grown in a swampy area, but if by chance a swamp cannot be obtained, then an irrigation system must be built in which water can be constantly supplied to the farm in large quantities to allow the rice plants to grow well.
- Husk Mill: Except if there is a husk mill near your farm, you need to get husk machines to remove the husk from the rice seeds.
Starting a Rice-Growing Business
1. Develop a Business Plan:
The first step is to develop a business plan for rice cultivation. The plan should include how much capital you need to obtain information, the site and location of the farm, how many hectares you will start with, how to locate your buyers, what your goals are for the first few years of the farm’s operation, will you buy your own equipment, or will you lease equipment from others? The answer to these questions will give you a clear picture of what your business will look like.
I mentioned earlier that the rice business is a capital-intensive business, so you will need a lot of start-up capital to run the business. If you have the capital to invest, that makes it even better. Even if you don’t have the capital but are confident that you can manage the rice farm successfully, you can get a business partner to invest in the business and also help you manage it, or you can look for an angel investor to simply invest in the business.
3. Acquiring the land to be used for agriculture:
You can acquire or buy the land if you have the money to do so, even if it means making the payment in installments. You can also sign a long-term lease with the owner of the land to use it as a rice farm.
4. Starting the growing process:
The process of growing rice is a long one. You can start looking for good rice seedlings to plant in a nursery, transplanting them to farmland after two to four weeks. Secondly, if the soil is not naturally swampy, it is necessary to provide a constant supply of water in large quantities to water the plant constantly, especially during the first weeks.
Finally, the weeding process. A rice plant is very subtle with weeds, which means that it can easily be choked by weeds. So you need to apply herbicides to kill the weeds and your need to spray organic fertilizer every few weeks to help the rice plants grow well.
It takes three to four months after planting for the rice plant to be ready for harvest. You know the rice is ready for harvest when the plant changes from green to brown.
6. After harvest:
After harvest, the rice seedling needs under other processes before it is ready for final consumption
- Sun drying of harvested rice: After harvesting the rice, it is necessary to dry it in the sun for three to five days to dry the remaining moisture, so that the husk can be easily separated from the grain.
- Hulling: The next process after harvesting is to hull the rice, i.e. to separate the husk from the grain. This requires a hulling and blowing machine.
- Boiling: You need to boil the rice, after which the rice is ready to be distributed to buyers.
- Final packing: You can decide to pack the rice in branded bags unless you have a contract to supply it without a bag. The branded bags must contain the name and location of your farm and also a cell phone number that customers can call to inquire about supply.
7. Obtaining buyers:
Even before you start the farm, you need to have a list of some potential customers who will need your finished rice; you can contact them once the rice is ready for them to start placing supplies. You can also contact restaurant and fast food owners in the area to inform them of your rice supply.
At this stage of the article, you should know the entire process involved in starting a rice-growing business, including factors to consider before starting the business.