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Participating in the $3 billion Upscale Pork Market

Pork accounts for about $3 billion of consumption value in Nigeria and Ghana alone, yet 80% of the consumed pork is imported, according to fresh reports from experts.

Pork is pig meat, which is a commonly consumed meat all over the world. Pork has suddenly become an upscale business in Nigeria and it is sold at a premium price in upscale areas. Consumption is driven by the influx of foreigners like Asians and Europeans. For instance, there are no less than 100,000 Chinese in Nigeria and the population comprises expatriates, merchants and now, descendants with Chinese ancestry, born in Nigeria. We also have a large population of Indians and other foreigners residing across various cities in the country who appreciate pork as a source of meat and a tasty meal.

Apart from foreigners, reports show that many Nigerians have become more receptive to eating pork meat. Consumption has really increased as more and more households have turned to pork meat as a cheaper alternative source of protein. Pork is also consumed in local bars and restaurants, and this is also pushing demand.

There are many ways to participate in the pork business. The primary scheme is to start a pig farm.  Pig farming is the raising and breeding of domestic pigs as livestock. Some experts say pig farming is the best livestock farming because you spend less and make more profit.

There are also other opportunities to gain from pig farming, ranging from revenue generation in the sale of pigs, to its processing as pork chops, ham, bacon and sausages. Pig farming delivers a diversity of by-products. These by-products are often sold at a premium especially to foreigners.

Care must however be taken in the farm to prevent a break out disease like the swine flu, which is why it is important to involve a veterinary doctor and go for proper training before start up.

Another way to participate in the fast moving pork market is to operate as an intermediary between the producer and final consumer. The large pig farms are often in the outskirts of  town, so you can make good business by purchasing from major farms and processing/packaging neatly, and then introducing your products to upscale groceries and markets in the town.

You can invest in cutting/slicing and packaging machines and refrigerators to have better  control over value-added processing. The more processed products like ham and other varieties attract higher prices. A recent market survey by some pig farmers showed that only top supermarkets in the big cities keep packaged and processed pork products, and many foreigners who wish to eat pork and pig products are often left frustrated when stock is not available.

The best approach is to target neighborhoods’ with high density of foreigners like the Chinese, Indians and others who like pork and pig produce, package your goods neatly and ensure regular available.

About Author

Victor Okeh is a graduate of Economics from Lagos State University. He is versatile in reporting business and economy, politics and finance, and entrepreneurship articles. He can be reached via – [email protected]

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