10 Hottest Agricultural Export Products in Nigeria

Export business is one of the most lucrative ventures in Nigeria. In this post, we take a look at the 10 hottest agricultural exports products in Nigeria.

10 Hottest Agricultural Export Products in Nigeria

But first, let’s take a look at how to launch your own export business.

First, you will need to have your business registered with the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC). You will also need to register with the Nigerian Export Promotion Council (NEPC). The purpose of the NEPC is to promote Nigerian export products and ensure proper documentation of export transactions. Registering with the NEPC will help you connect with buyers while also presenting your export produce in foreign trade fairs.

Once you’re registered with the CAC and NEPC, you can get your export documents and begin contacting buyers. The documents include commercial documents, quality documents, shipping documents, and the tariff concession documents.

Another important step is finding suppliers. You will need to consider the location of the supplier, the quality of the product provided by the supplier as well as the price of the product. Once you have found suppliers, the next step is locating your buyers. These buyers are usually located in different countries and you will need to have a community of buyers if you want your export business to be successful. You can use the internet to find international buyers. Another option is to locate buyers by attending international trade fairs. Some of these fairs are organized by NEPC and they serve as an excellent meeting point for buyers and sellers.

10 Hottest Agricultural Export Products in Nigeria

  1. Ginger

Ginger is one of the most traded spices in the world and Nigeria is one of the largest producers. Interestingly, the process of export ginger isn’t so difficult; you just need to know what to do.

The first step is to do your research; then you must register your business and find buyers for your product as stated above.

  1. Palm Kernel Oil

Palm Kernel Oil (PKO) is another highly sought-after export product. It is the oil extracted from the pulp of palm fruit which is different from palm oil.

PKO is used to manufacture cosmetics, pharmaceutical products, and confectioneries. Nigeria is one of the major exporters of oil palm producers alongside the likes of Malaysia and Indonesia.

Each year, Nigeria exports an estimated 1 million metric tons of palm oil per year which has a value of $1.8 billion.

  1. Cocoa Butter

Nigeria is one of the major producers of cocoa products, and cocoa butter is one of the prominent products that is often exported.

Cocoa is the second major non-oil foreign exchange earner in Nigeria after leather. It is produced in 14 states of the Federation namely Ondo, Cross River, Oyo, Osun, Ekiti, Ogun, Edo, Kogi, Akwa Ibom, Delta, Abia, Kwara, Ebonyi, and Rivers. In Africa, Nigeria is the third largest cocoa grower in Africa and producing about 400,000 MT of the commodity.

Over 98% of the product is exported and it provides means of livelihood and employment to over five million {5,000,000} people.

  1. Rubber

Rubber is one of the prominent export products in Nigeria. It is one of the three cash crops alongside palm oil and groundnut that is exported in Nigeria.

In 2013, Nigeria earned over N300 billion within the first three months of the year. The country exports about 60,000 tons of natural rubber annually.

Currently, rubber is grown in Edo, Delta, Ondo, Ogun, Abia, Anambra, Akwa Ibom, Cross River, Rivers, Ebonyi and Bayelsa States where the amount of rainfall is about 1800 mm to 2000 mm per annum.

According to the International Rubber Study group, the global demand for natural rubber may reach 14.2 million tons by 2020, while the production of natural rubber can reach only 13.6 million tons/ year in 2020. Demand for natural rubber for the automobile industry in China and India is also expected to increase further, this makes the export of rubber a lucrative venture for businessmen. You can check this article by California Industrial Rubber Co. for more information.

  1. Sesame Seed

Sesame seed is another valuable export product that is grown in Nigeria. It can be found in quantity in places like Benue and Jigawa states although it can be grown in every state of the country. This product ranks second to cocoa in terms of export volume and foreign exchange earnings. Nigeria is the 5th largest producer of this commodity;

The seed is a highly nutritious product with high investment value. It has the potential to generate about $4.69 billion in foreign exchange into government and farmers’ coffers if given deserved attention and proper funding.

The Nigerian sesame seed is currently in hot demand all over the world, owing to its many health benefits and nutritional content, including vitamins, minerals, natural oils and organic compounds, like calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorous, manganese, copper, zinc, fibre, thiamin, vitamin B6, folate, protein and tryptophan. The seed is Nigeria’s biggest agricultural produce exported to Japan.

The plant thrives well in the Northern part of Nigeria, like Kano, Jigawa, Bauchi, Borno, Yobe, Adamawa, Taraba, Abuja and some parts of the West due to its drought-resistant nature. It can also be grown in some parts of the South East and South South such as Ebonyi, Cross River, and Delta State.

According to the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Nigeria’s sesame production is put at 200,000 MT per hectare.

  1. Honey

Honey is another major export commodity from Nigeria to other countries. Currently, a kilogram of honey costs above $150 in the international markets. Pure natural honey contains trace enzymes as sugar, mineral, vitamins and amino acids and a litre of honey can fetch good dollars in the foreign market.

Though honey has a thriving local market in Nigeria, honey also commands very high demand at the international market. The price of honey is currently priced between $8 – $10 USD per kilogram at the international market as opposed to the price its presently being sourced from the local seller/market in Nigeria which is between N 1000 and N 1,500 per litre.

To export honey, the exporter would have to register with Nigerian Export Promotion Council {NEPC} with office in Lagos and other major cities in Nigeria.

It is recommended that you send samples of the product to be exported to the buyer so that the buyer can confirm the quality of the product and place a bulk order.

  1. Shrimps

Shrimp is another popular export product and there is an abundant deposit of shrimps in the Niger Delta region of Nigeria. The demand for shrimps is high in countries like Portugal, France, Belgium, Spain, and the USA. The major markets for the Nigerian shrimp in Europe are Belgium, Portugal, Spain, France, and the USA. The semi-processed white prawns attract higher price (ranging according to sizes 1-7 from US$ 3 – US$ 18/kg) than the peeled, deveined and decapitated brown shrimps sold between US$ 2 and US$ 3.

  1. Garlic

Garlic is a cash crop which is grown under irrigation by farmers in the Savanna areas in Nigeria. With internationally certified good quantities of garlic, you are sure of foreign hard currencies.

It is widely recognized today as one of the health-enhancing supplements. You can make millions of Naira exporting garlic in Nigeria. Typically, Garlic is grown commercially in FADAMA regions of Northern Nigeria such as  Kano, Kaduna, Kebbi, Sokoto, Jigawa, Bauchi, Katsina and Zamfara States. An estimated 150, 000 MT of garlic is produced in Sokoto state.

Garlic is planted around September of every year and harvested around February.  It can be stored in good conditions for at least 12 calendar months without being damaged.

  1. Yam tubers

Nigeria is presently the highest producers of yam. In 2009 alone, yam export accounted for about US$450 million exchange. However, the country is currently not maximizing its export potentials of this product due to low quality. This is why there is the need to adhere to quality regulations in order to make your yam exportation business a success.

  1. Cotton

Cotton farming in Nigeria has received very little attention from various governments over the past two decades. This has led to lack of improved seeds, poor access to extension services and low prices of the produce.

Over the years, the contribution of cotton to the GDP has dropped from 25 per cent to 4 per cent. On the other hand, Nigeria spends over $4 billion each year importing textiles and ready-made clothing.

However, there is an international market for the Nigerian cotton. And the industry will grow in the future when the country starts producing high yielding, pest and disease-resistant variety such as the biotechnology cotton.

In the country, Zamfara is a major cotton producer with 15 ginneries. However, the challenges facing cotton production in the country include lack of access to credit facility, improved seeds and low price of the commodity.

The potential export revenue from cotton is estimated at $6.5 billion because the demand is huge in the international exports market. So, if you’re looking to export cotton, you will have to work with the government and cotton producing states like Zamfara to make this business successful.


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