JATROPHA FARMING

jatropha-fruit-and-seeds

Jatropha Farming
Jatropha Seeds
Probably you’ve already heard about the Jatropha plant which has been hyped as the magical bullet for bio-diesel. If you haven’t read on. Jatropha curcas is a drought-resistant perennial plant that grows well in marginal/poor soil. It is easy to establish, grows relatively quickly and lives, producing seeds for 50 years.
Jatropha produces oil rich seeds which have oil content of 37%. The oil can be combusted as fuel without being refined. It burns with clear smoke-free flame; it has been tested successfully as fuel for simple diesel engine. The by-products are press cake a good organic fertilizer, oil contains also insecticide.

  • Capital
Jatropha Fruits
Jatropha farming is relatively new on the stage. Since the plant grows in arid areas, you will need to have a piece of land in these areas or you can lease from local land owners.  The plant is low maintenance so you only need to spend on labor for preparing the land and seeds.  
  • Knowledge Requirement
This form of business is relatively new so you might need to consult an expert in jatropha farming in the ministry of Agriculture or in one of the numerous NGOs that are promoting the plant. 
  • Value Addition
Oil Extraction Machine
You can also invest in oil extraction machine to enable you extract the oil from the seeds directly for sale. Jatropha oil is being used in many parts of the country as a substitute for Kerosene. 
  • Challenges
When the idea was brought forward at first, there was a lot of promise of overseas market. Of late there have been complaints from farmers who pioneered in this field that there is no market.  The big international market has not materialized. However if you can extract the oil locally, then you can market the fuel to people as a clean alternative to fossil fuels. 
  • Growth potential
Jatropha plant
The jury is still out on the growth potential of this particular business. Lack of ready market is proving to be a problem and that has been attributed to alternative bio-diesel that comes from countries such as Brazil flooding the market. On the local front all it takes to grow is ingenuity in marketing to people. 
  • Market
The best way to gain from this business is by extracting the oil from the seeds and marketing it to households. You might have to do some education because many people are not aware of this form of fuel. 
  • Competition
Competition comes in the form of more established fossil fuels such as kerosene and diesel. You will have to convince potential customers on the benefits of using a cleaner form of energy.

Other Businesses in Agriculture:

  1. Poultry farming
  2. Dairy farming
  3. Jatropha farming
  4. Mushroom farming
  5. Fish farming
  6. Organic farming
  7. Yoghurt Making
  8. Green house farming
  9. Garden/potted plants
  10. Rabbit farming
  11. Pig Farming