Farming activity is increasing in countries around the world including Liberia where we now see an increasing interest in young people becoming agricultural entrepreneurs. This is a clear sight that farming in the country is lucrative and an enterprise that will pay you profits for a long time.
Farming in Liberia just as it is in every country around the world is inclusive of animal husbandry as well as crop planting. You can choose to venture into one or both if you have the resource and capital.
To begin farming in Liberia, you have to identify your area of interest, get financed, find a land, choose your crop and or animal breed, plant your crop and or raise your animal breeds, and so on. The steps depend on your area of interest whether animal husbandry or crop planting.
Looking at the summarized step above, you may want to conclude that you have an idea of what you need to do, don’t rush yet until you have read the in-depth discourse on how to start a farming business in Liberia discussed throughout this material.
How To Start Farming Business In Liberia Step By Step Guide
There is no big deal to start farming in Nigeria. You need to be serious about the business with a mindset to win. Before you take off, you need to be familiar with the two areas of farming business in Liberia
In simple words, animal husbandry entails the management and care of livestock to produce food and livestock products.
Animal husbandry covers a wide range of farm animals such as poultry birds, cattle, snails, pigs, and many more.
Crop husbandry refers to the management and cultivation of edible crops for food and manufacturing purposes.
Crop husbandry is broad having different sub-specialties that you can venture into.
To begin your venture as an animal farmer, there are factors that you need to consider and steps to be taken. They are:
Step 1: Identify your Area of Interest
We earlier mentioned that the area of animal husbandry is a broad field with diverse niches. It is best to identify the area that interests you, it can be one or more but it must be an area you are passionate about.
Step 2: Find a Land
As a new animal farmer, finding land to buy for your niche farming can be challenging. The land you will get depends on the type of animal farming you want to carry out as well as the scale of the farming.
Also, when it comes to finding an ideal land for animal farming, you have to consider the weather condition, security of the area, and soil properties. in addition, you can buy or rent the land depending on the scale of the farm and how long you intend to carry out the venture.
Prepare the Land
If you have successfully acquired land that suits your need, the next action is to prepare the land by performing the following activities.
Clear the Land
Whether it is plain land or land with buildings, you have to clear the land to rid it of wastes, unwanted plants, debris, and so on. You can use simple cleaning tools such as a rake, hoes, and cutlass, or you can use machines depending on the size of the land.
Clean the Land
Once you are done clearing the land, you have to clean the place by raking away or packing the dirt. In some cases, you have to burn the waste and dispose of all the rubbish.
Build Animal House
The animal house is where you stock your animals to manage, care for, and raise them. There are different options for an animal house such as cages, hutches, pens, stables, galvanized wired houses, and many more.
You will find already made animal houses that you can buy in the marketplace, or you can construct the one you want.
Prep the Animal House
You have to stock the animal house with equipment that will be used for their everyday care. Items such as feeding pans, watering cans, and lights for warmth should be available in the animal house.
Step 3: Choose your Animal Breed
This is the stage where you visit an accredited breeder or agricultural ministry to purchase your animal breed.
Step 4: Get Animal Feed
Animal feeds are compulsory because you will have to feed the animals daily. The feeds should be rich in a nutrient that will be beneficial to the animals aiding their growth and hygiene.
Step 5: Stock Your Animal on the farm
If you have successfully acquired your animal breed, you will have to place them in the animal house on the farmland.
Step 6: Animal Management
You will have to manage the animals so that they will grow to maturity without suffering from or overcoming diseases. The following tasks are important to be carried out.
Feed your animals with the right feed daily and the feed should be as prescribed in line with animal age, weight, and size.
Clean the Animal House
You have to clean the animal house regularly. It can be once a week or twice to make it hygienic and in turn, keep them healthy. Remove dead animals, leftover foods, animal wastes, dirt and debris from the animal house by sweeping, raking, and parking the wastes.
Step 7: Animal Treatment
There are treatments administered to farm animals at different stages and ages. Ensure you have them treated so that they can resist diseases stay healthy and grow to maturity. It is best to communicate with your veterinary doctor about the best possible treatment.
Step 8: Harvest
Collect the mature animals and prepare them for marketing where they will be sold. On the other hand, your customers can come to the farm to buy. This involves heavy advertising to let the public know that you are ready to sell your livestock.
Crop planting is an interesting enterprise that involves the growing of various edible plants mostly for consumption. Some are purchased to be processed for manufacturing purposes.
If you are akin to becoming a crop farmer, you have to follow the process below.
Step 1: Identify your niche
Crop farming is broad having numerous branches among which you can choose from and specialize. It is at this stage that you make your findings and research into the area of crop farming that you are passionate about.
Step 2: Get financed
As a starter with little or no finance, you have to source means of funding. You can apply for government loans and or grants related to the agriculture designed for entrepreneurs.
Step 3: Find the land to farm
When looking for farmland, there are certain factors you have to consider such as the temperature of the area, soil properties, access to water, and proximity to the market. You can buy or rent farmland, however, if you have the means, the best option is to buy but it depends on the type of farming you want to go into.
Step 4: Choose your Crop
You can visit an established farm that has the crop breed you want. Another option is to visit the agro-shops or the ministry of agriculture to obtain your seeds.
Step 5: Prepare the Farmland
To prepare your farmland for farming, you need to clear the land of existing shrubs, weeds, and other unwanted plants including debris. The wastes and rubbish are to be disposed of or raked together and burnt.
Also, in the process of land preparation, you should plow and till the farmland, level the land, spray the land, create a canal system, create heaps of farm beds, and water the land.
Step 6: Begin Planting
The planting of seeds can be done in three different steps. These are:
This type of planting is the planting of crop seedlings directly into farm beds. The seeds are poured inside the fallow created on the farm bed and covered with soil to avoid being washed away by water, or blown away by winds.
This planting process is the transferring of sprouted plants into the prepared farm beds on the farm. The plants are removed from a nursery where they were initially planted and planted on the main farm where they grow and germinate to the fruiting stage.
This is considered the best method of planting because it is faster to reach the fruiting stage compared to direct planting.
In the case where it is hard to come by seedlings of a particular crop, it is best to use this method. Grafting simply is the process of placing a part of one plant either the bud or stem into or on a stem, root, or branch of another plant (stock) and tied together so that they can bond and will continue to grow.
Step 7: Mulch the Plants
Mulching is an important process in crop farming. after planting your crops on the farm beds, you should spread a layer of material on the ground around plants to protect their roots from heat, cold, or drought.
Step 8: Plant Management
You have to manage and care for your plants so that they can mature fully to the fruiting stage. Plant management activities include:
Plants need continuous watering and the best method to ensure the constant supply of water to plants is irrigation. The process involves creating channels in between farm beds through which the water flows to help the plant grow.
Weed the Farmland
Weeding is an important activity during the process of farming. The removal of unwanted plants can be done using simple farm tools. The essence of weeding is to reduce competition with main crop plants for water, sunlight, nutrients, and space.
Disinfect the Farm
To protect your crops from pest and disease infestation, you have to disinfect the farm by spraying herbicides and pesticides that are not harmful to the edible plants. There are different types of fumigation you can use at different percentages based on the growth level of the plant.
Step 9: Apply Fertilizer
Fertilizer application is necessary to enhance or augment plant nutrients and soil natural fertility. Typically, fertilizers are applied into the soil in proximity to receptor plants so that the nutrients can easily be absorbed.
Step 10: Harvest
This is the stage where you gather all the ripe crops from the field. The method of harvesting farm produce depends on the type of crops planted. Common tools used for harvesting include scythe, sickle, or reaper.
Is Liberia Good for Farming?
Liberia is indeed a good place to farm. The country is blessed with a good climate and rich soil properties that are favorable to different types of crop and animal farming.
What is the Problem of Agriculture in Liberia?
Agriculture remains a vital economic activity in Liberia however, it is not without some challenges that serve as a setback for the enterprise. The problem of agriculture in Liberia are mainly irrigation, poor seeds and breeding stock, and lack of fertilizer, machinery, and infrastructure for transport, storage, and marketing as well.
What is the Method of Farming in Liberia?
The different methods of farming in Liberia are shifting cultivation, and livestock production. However, the most practised method of farming in the country is Rainfed agriculture.
What are the Two Types of Agriculture in Liberia?
The two main types of agriculture practised in Liberia are subsistence and commercial but, subsistence agriculture is predominantly practised.
What is the Main Cash Crop in Liberia?
There are several crops planted in Liberia for commercial purposes. The predominant main cash crop in the country are rubber, oil palm, cocoa, and timber.
What is the Reason why Farmers in Liberia Earn low Income?
Despite the hard work and effort put into agriculture activities by farmers in Liberia, most of them earn a low income, why? Reasons are attributed to lack of marketing, poor, poor seedlings, poor pest and disease management, limited fertilizer, and lack of technology are the major challenges faced by farmers in the country.
What are the Types of Farming in Liberia?
The main type of farming practiced by farmers in Liberia is cassava, rubber, rice, oil palm, cocoa, and sugarcane production. These products consist of the major exportation products in the country.
List Five Importance of Agriculture in Liberia
Agriculture is a major activity in Liberia and it is beneficial to the individual farmers and families as well as the country at large. The benefits include:
- A means of livelihood for over 60% of Liberians
- A major contributor to the nation’s economy.
- Source of employment
- A major source of food in the country
- Production of cash crops for exportation purposes.
What are Possible Solutions for Agriculture Development in Liberia?
To solve the agricultural problems in Liberia, below are some vital solutions that can be implemented.
- Educating farmers on modern farming methods
- Adequate Supply of fertilizers
- Availability of fertile seedlings for planting
- Modern machines and farming tools should be available for farmers
- Large farming areas should be provided to farmers at low costs
- Financial schemes to empower farmers in the country
- Irrigation practice should be encouraged to complement rainfed agriculture
- Improve access to market both locally and globally
Farming in Liberia is an important activity and a great contributor to the country’s economy. This material will help you throughout your journey as a farmer from the beginning stage to the latter. Ensure you follow the steps that were outlined and discussed above.