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My first Experience with food business and How to Grow a Sustained Business

Volume 2

My first Experience with food business and How to Grow a Sustained Business

Before I begin, let me say this ; food business is one of the most valuable business in the world, it is the most in demand commodity and interesting business I have ever known. One thing that Inspires about food business is the urge to help feed the poor and less privileged in society. I personally developed interest in food business when I noticed how much  people spend on distributing food to the poor and less privileged people in my society, most particularly during the Ramadan period. I always wondered why some people value rice over other farm produce In the village while people in the city value all food products as most recognize their nutritional value.  

       On one faithful day I said to myself why don't we have enough food when there is land to cultivate and water to help germinate seeds, but little did I know not all lands can be fruitful.

    So I began thinking of how food business can help lower the effect of poverty, as a Yoruba adage says, “bi ebi ba ti kuro ninu ise, ise bu se”, meaning once hunger is out of poverty, then poverty will be limited. I did my first ever food business, buying maize and guinea corn of 5 bags each for myself at the rate of 4500 & 5000 naira each respectively.

As a student I can only preserve and store it properly for 3 months before I can resell because then, the prices are profitable. At that point I can take  them to the market and sell at a higher rate of 8500 and 10000 naira each at week 14th of purchase. At first, I could hardly believe this yield, it was, not until I was paid after a short bargain with the buyer. The whole experience was shocking in how dramatic the results were.  

      And of course I quickly concluded, that  was a very profitable business. This almost seamless induction helped me see future in food business as I only sold 4 of the maize and Guinea corn, I gave the remaining inventory to a family, with it they  prepared tuwo (locally made swallow from maize) and ogi (pap). What I invested  25000 maize which yielded 34000, making 10000 profit after reserving one and 40000 on Guinea corn after investing 28000 and giving out one for home usage, making 12000 profit. This is what some rich fellows do that earn them abundant wealth over years. Imagine you bought 100 bags of each, the profit will be more than 100 Percent return and you can as well give out some for friends and family.

     I continued, with confidence this time around buying more that following year but unfortunately I could not get my profit as expected. The preceding year was still the same but that year, I almost lost the whole capital, so I quit and vow to only buy for my personal use, that way I don't care what happens as I almost ate half of the goods I bought myself.  


       After some years, I was still trying to figure out where I went wrong. I did a course and one of the lectures mentioned some business tips that then gave me a proper insight on what I should have done to sustain growth and profit in grain business. I will share with you all what I learned and understand about food business in Nigeria.

   To really grasp the information, I recommend that you read “Small Business Big Money” by Akin Alabi and “Money Master the Game” by Tony Robins, they are both very interesting  read, as they both shaped the way I now manage my grain business. Some friendly traders too helped me in getting things done properly.

Lets quickly jump to those lessons!

    First lesson, you must be an insider, in all you do as a business man or woman, you must be an insider. What this means is that you must source all knowledge required to start a business, You must also know the dos and don't before engaging yourself, as this will help you grow, and help you in handling any sudden changes on the way. Remember, how to manage your future dealings depends on what you know so far, read more on food businesses, through an array of media mediums such as, articles, blogs and news. They are all readily available and very important, knowing how prices move before giving it a try will be most beneficial..

    My first mistake was knowing little or nothing about prices and how the market works. I had such a high yield in my first trial because I was only lucky and fell into the market at the right time. Additionally, I got some help from business savants for the first business. My dad helped in transporting the goods, he told me to buy those two products since he knows how demanding it will be, he gave me the contact of the buyers. Obviously he helped me perfect the business so when I thought I knew all, I failed woefully. Not considering that I still had much to learn from his priceless knowledge. He had given me free labor and advice.


     Secondly, Do not believe everything you are told on stocks, even if they are your partners, know what you believe when you're advised on what to do in your businesses. In my personal opinion and experience  anyone can be trickish, as everyone wants to make profits. Do your own research and keep learning how best you can profit and add value to what you do. Do note that farmers know nothing about food price control. In my third year, I followed what people say not knowing they are only buyers who wanted to get huge profit from my sweat.

     Thirdly, be professional in your engagements with buyers and most especially, asking sellers questions could be a trap for you. Don't ask them all the questions you have in your head at once, you can ask them one question and save the others for another week or you can ask different people those questions, make them understand you do this business, week in week out but maybe you're new in that area.

      Fourthly, be nice and be a good negotiator, you can learn more on successful negotiations, learn how to deal with others who may have different priorities than you. Don't be unchangeable, be ready to adjust your stands. Diversify and restructure your business ideas using different techniques.


     In food business you can choose to participate in any of these five aspects. I will provide more careful details in my next article. and how best it will profit you with zero loss and 100% profit assurance.