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THE FARM CEO (Issue 26): Farm CEOs Lack of Sales and Marketing Savvy REMAINS a major problem, Products (e.g. Delicious Chin Chin) made from Cassava – Going beyond Fufu, Gari etc, Agro Nigeria: a 100% Nigerian magazine on Agriculture, 300 Ha Pineapple Plantation in Nigeria’s Calabar – Rivers State, Specialty Fats & Oils Made From Different Parts of the Palm Fruit [FREE Download – Complimentary: Special Issue. Agra Innovate Exhibition Visit Report]

In this special FREE issue of The Farm CEO, I present the promised report on my visit to the 2015 Agra Innovate exhibition on its last day (Thursday 26/11/2015), at Landmark Centre on Victoria Island.

Here are the headlines, reviews – and links – for this week’s featured news items:

[URL] Farm CEOs Lack of Sales and Marketing Savvy REMAINS a major problem P.1

[URL] Products (e.g. Delicious Chin Chin) made from Cassava – Going beyond Fufu, Gari etc P.2

[URL] Agro Nigeria: a 100% Nigerian magazine on Agriculture P.2

[URL] 300 Ha Pineapple Plantation in Nigeria’s Calabar – Rivers State P.3

[URL] Specialty Fats & Oils Made From Different Parts of the Palm Fruit P.3

Below: Screenshot of the cover for Issue No. 26 of THE FARM CEO (Monday 30th November 2015) – Click HERE, or the cover to download PDF!

Screenshot of the cover for Issue No. 26 of THE FARM CEO (Monday 30th November 2015)

 

What follows below is the FULL issue reproduced here with my compliments.

Badge issued to me at Agra Innovate entry

Sadly, my smartphone camera acted up during that event, such that the video I recorded emerged “corrupted” while most of the photos came out blurred to various extents. I still cannot explain what happened.

However, all is not lost. I salvaged some photos and took time to create digital versions of materials I picked up from stands I visited. You’ll see them as you read the notes I’ve prepared below.

 

1. Farm CEOs Lack of Sales and Marketing Savvy REMAINS a major problem.

It’s a serious challenge limiting what I estimate to be over 90% of farm business owners and agro allied enterprises.

In less than 3 hours at the exhibition venue, the conversation I had with various stakeholders there proved most still do NOT understand that they have to THINK as entrepreneurs, with smart marketing drive, if they want to succeed with their agro based businesses.

My interaction with a VERY animated group of farm business owners was instructive in this regard. At the stand for a seeds production company, I silently waited to let them finish so I could move closer.

That was when one of them, a lady, said “Look, we’re buying all these stuff now. But what we forget is that after producing, finding buyers who will pay well will be the challenge”

The others nodded in agreement and began recalling previous unsavoury experiences at the hands of exploitative buyers.

I’d engaged a tall young man in the group in discussion by this time, but could not help over hearing what the others were saying.

At a point, as I listened to them, I could no longer help myself, and decided to speak up.

I began by saying I always felt really pained to hear farm business owners who had worked so hard to turn out products, complaining about being held to ransom by prospective buyers.

Then I told them the following true story, to illustrate…

Just a week before, while I was still in Cotonou, I’d called up a Farm CEO who’d taken up a promo to purchase my Poultry Farm Manager, and become a member of my Inner Circle in the process.

One of the benefits of Inner Circle membership is that I make periodic offers to help each member in any way I can. Sometimes I research, compile and send information across. At other times I go further to make hefty discount promo offers of products or services I discover a member(s) need(s).

In this gentleman’s case I’d called to ask if he was interested in having me ghost-write a book in his name on a topic related to his vocation or field of expertise (he works with a popular manufacturing multinational, and runs the farm in his spare time).

However, before I brought that up, I asked how the farm business was doing.

He sighed and replied that he was not happy.

I asked why, and he said “These market women are just making things difficult for me. I have money set aside to expand this business, but if I cannot sell and make good profit I don’t see any point in doing that!”

When I heard that, I wasted not time in telling him about a solution I was working on, to help members of my network attract profitable bulk buyers for their farm produce, AHEAD of the time they’ll need to sell.

His interest was piqued on hearing that. I promised to send him details of the offer, once the web page with details was ready.

By the time I finished that story, the farm business owners knew I understood.

With the exception of aspects having to do with using print on demand publishing, the rest of what I told them is more or less what I have written in my VERY popular article on this theme titled “Producing Good Catfish is Important, But Finding Profitable Buyers is Imperative!”

The ideas I share in that piece are universally applicable to all businesses. That’s why I often tell those I refer to it, to simply – in their minds – replace “Catfish” in the title, with “Products”.

Not long after I began, the lady suggested that they sit down to listen to me explain further. We moved away from the stand to an empty table. They got chairs, and arranged themselves into a semi circle.

By the time I was done, it was obvious that they could see that I was right in saying the POWER to find better buyers AHEAD of time, for their intended farm produce was 100% within their control.

As I left, the lady told me they would be in touch to tell me how they’re making successful use of the ideas I’d shared with them.

I replied that THAT would make me truly happy, because too many Farm CEOs let themselves get frustrated out of business because they lack these insights.

For details of specific case study examples I gave them, click here to send me a message.

NB: I’ve embedded some photos of the items mentioned above. If you want the full package, email tayo at tksola dot com or fill/submit the form at http://tayosolagbade.com/contact.htm

Click HERE to download FREE PDF version of this issue of The Farm CEO!

2. Products (e.g. Delicious Chin Chin made from Cassava – Going beyond Fufu, Gari and other basic food items.

Websites: www.giz.de and www.sedin-nigeria.net

The Deutsche Gesellschaft fur Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) describes itself as “Nigeria’s partner for sustainable development since 1974”.

It’s a German Not-for-Profit which has established itself in Nigeria as a force to be reckoned with in supporting micro, small and medium scale farmers to develop sustainable strategies to process their farm produce into high profile products e.g. chin chin

I was given a package I have made digital copies of and offer download links to. If you want it, email tayo at tksola dot com.

They also gave me a sample of one of their cassava chips.

giz-chin-chin-from-cassava

There was also a booklet on making Potato cakes.

giz-booklet on making Potato cakes

giz-booklet on making Potato cakes

giz-booklet on making Potato cakes

The key here is taking basic farm produce and using processing to create new products that command superior pricing and yield better profit margins for the farmer.

NB: I’ve embedded some photos of the items mentioned above. If you want the full package, email tayo at tksola dot com or fill/submit the form at http://tayosolagbade.com/contact.htm

Click HERE to download FREE PDF version of this issue of The Farm CEO!

3. Agro Nigeria: a 100% Nigerian magazine on Agriculture*

Website: www.agronigeria.com.ng

It’s amazing that MORE people are not talking about this magazine.

On my part, I’ve been buying magazines on Agriculture from local newsstands, which I found are actually published abroad – even though they have “Africa” in their titles!

With Agro Nigeria, what we have is a magazine whose content is devoted to our market, and designed to add useful value to help various sectors of our industry grow.

I spoke with the MD (Richard-Mark Mbaram), and we found several areas in which we shared similar sentiments about what is needed to move the industry forward.

Example: Nigeria’s Comatose Extension Services

I glimpsed a subtitle on an issue of the magazine that described Nigeria’s extension services as Comatose, while speaking with him

When I told him I agreed with the use of the word “comatose” to describe that state of Agricultural Extensions Services, I could see that I struck a chord.

The truth is very little REAL extension work is happening where it is most badly needed.

The reason is little exists on the ground to make competent extension professional willing to play their roles.

Many gladly take up appointment with international organizations or in foreign institutions. Lots of research work being done by Extension experts from these parts tend to be financed or sponsored by foreign governments with a mandate to generate findings relevant to their own economy, industry and markets – NOT ours.

What is to be done?

Well, WE also have to create similarly attractive working conditions locally, to make our own extension experts willing to stick around and put their hearts into doing what they’ve been trained to do, with the required dedication and professionalism!

agronigeria-stand

agronigeria 1

agronigeria 2

*Before I left the stand, the young lady manning it requested I answer some questions (in an audio recording) regarding my view of the exhibition, as well as my opinion on the future of Agriculture in Nigeria.

NB: I’ve embedded some photos of the items mentioned above. If you want the full package, email tayo at tksola dot com or fill/submit the form at http://tayosolagbade.com/contact.htm

Click HERE to download FREE PDF version of this issue of The Farm CEO!

4. 300 Ha Pineapple Plantation in Nigeria’s Calabar – Rivers State

Websites: www.dansaagroallied.com | www.dansaholdings.com

I spent about 20 minutes talking with Ms. Lillian Sadoh, Group Head, ITMIS & Strategy, at the Dansa Agro stand (Dansa Agro Allied Limited – member of Dangote Group)

My interest was ignited when I saw their displays of pineapple fruit replicas and cartons.

She explained that they have over 300 hectares planted with Smooth Cayenne and MD 2 varieties of the fruit, and that they export their produce.

Flyer Dansa 4

I was surprised to hear that and told her so. I never knew Nigeria had any Pineapple plantations, talk less of one that exported the fruits.

By the time I left her stand, I’d told her as much as I could about my idea to get companies like hers, engaged in using the fruit to make drinks, to consider going a step further to use the peels at that large scale to make another range of drinks products. This would be done at low to zero costs, since the processing overheads would be the same.

I later ran into a young lady who showed interest in my flyer about the pineapple peel drinks, and noted that she’d visited Blue Skies, a UK company operating out of Ghana, engaged in processing and export of fresh cut fruit.

According to her, the company, when she visited it had begun making use of the peels to produce drinks. But she could offer no specific details.

I’d known about Blue Skies in the course of developing my ideas for making drinks using the pineapple peels, back in 2013.

Then I’d found a PDF document authored by the CEO, with impressive details of the company’s performance, including the fact that they got an award from the Queen of England herself.

For me, I continue to look for ways to get more people at various levels, to develop interest in getting more of the pineapple fruit, by using its peels for drinks/cake making like I’ve proven can be done.

Dansa 1

Dansa 2

Dansa 3

NB: I’ve embedded some photos of the items mentioned above. If you want the full package, email tayo at tksola dot com or fill/submit the form at http://tayosolagbade.com/contact.htm

[PS: In case you’re not aware, I plan to launch a family business with my kids and we will be using my specially developed production process to produce own unique range of branded specialty drinks and cakes, for sale.

If you’re a regular on this blog, you’re probably familiar with the work I’ve been doing since 2013, developing my own unique range of home made drinks (fermented and non-fermented) using waste Pineapple peels.

It all began when I tried to show some Beninese women pineapple sellers on the university campus in Benin Republic’s Calavi, that they could make drinks to sell, using the large quantities of peels they kept throwing away at the end of each day’s sales.

My kids now make the drinks using charcoal stoves. I’ve also taught them to bake pineapple peel based cakes without ovens.

Visit http://tayosolagbade.com/boisson-tayo.html to view photos and learn more about FREE training I offer interested groups.]

Click HERE to download FREE PDF version of this issue of The Farm CEO!

5. Specialty Fats & Oils Made From Different Parts of the Palm Fruit

Website: www.presco-plc.com | www.siat-group.com

I’ve known about this Presco Plc since I worked in Guinness Nigeria Plc – Benin Brewery (Oct. ’94 to Dec. 2001)

They are based in Edo State.

But I never really had any clear idea of the nature of business they did – especially how they extract specialty oils of about 7 kinds from different parts of the palm fruit.

My ignorance ended when I saw the glass jars put on display at their stand during the last day of the exhibition.

I was one of several people who looked in wonder at the different coloured oils, in a row of jars, as one of the company’s 2 employees manning the stands explained how the oils were made.

Yesterday (Tuesday 1st December 2015), I placed a call to the company’s Head of Sales and Marketing – Jalaj ARORA, and I suggested that the company consider employing low to zero cost Web Marketing to create more awareness about this interesting ways the palm fruits gets used to produce the range of high quality oils Presco Plc is known for.

Done right, this can really create buzz about the company and boost more awareness and recognition for them, in a way that would enhance public perception, and lead to better business opportunities.

He told me he liked the idea, and asked that I do a write-up on what I proposed, and send it in so he could forward it to the Head Office.

However, I did some thinking and decided to create a mind map to share with readers here on this blog, using this idea as a Case Study. As is my habit, I want to kill as many birds as possible with one stone. This way, others who have similar needs can use the ideas from here.

So, the mind map will FIRST be shared here, and then to my email subscribers, AFTER which I’ll send him a link to download it from here.

If you’d like to be notified when it goes LIVE, click here to let me know.

Presco 1

Presco 1a

Presco 2

Presco 3

Presco 4

NB: I’ve embedded some photos of the items mentioned above. If you want the full package, email tayo at tksola dot com or fill/submit the form at http://tayosolagbade.com/contact.htm

Click HERE to download FREE PDF version of this issue of The Farm CEO!

PS: Since I’ve only featured 4 companies I visited in this report, I imagine you’re thinking THIS:

Question: But Tayo, what about the other companies that were present at the exhibition? Don’t you have any information about them and what they put on display?

My Answer: Well, I got a copy of the Agra Innovate brochure which offers useful information about all the exhibitors, the sponsors, media partners and so on.

Agra Innovate brochure 1

Agra Innovate brochure 2

Agra Innovate brochure 3

Agra Innovate brochure 4

To get a zipped folder containing digital versions of ALL the pages in that document, email me via info at the farm ceo dot net or fill/submit the form at http://tayosolagbade.com/contact.htm

*I could have uploaded all the digital versions of the items I referred to above, but I simply do NOT have the time or patience to do that. Plus, there is a potential bandwidth issue to consider. That’s why I’d prefer to email the zipped folders to any interested persons. So, if you want it, let me know!

 

Click HERE to download FREE PDF version of this issue of The Farm CEO!

[IMPORTANT: This blog's contents are being updated following the transfer to www.tayosolagbade.com from my former domain - Spontaneousdevelopment.com. As a result, some parts of it may not work properly for now. Quick Tip: If a link contains "spontaneousdevelopment.com", simply change it to "tayosolagbade.com" - and it should work. This applies to article links as well as image links. Work continues to update the links(in over 500 articles). Tayo K. Solagbade.]

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Tayo K. Solagbade*
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