The Business of Agro-Processing & Value Addition

Find out what it takes to start an agro product processing business and learn the pitfalls to avoid - to thrive in the sector.

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About the Session

Generally, African countries export low-value primary products and then import higher-value finished products. The African Development Bank (AfDB) estimates that 62% of Africa’s exports are primary products. For example, Africa earns just 5.5% of the $100 billion cocoa trade, despite accounting for 75% of the world’s cocoa supplies. A similar story applies to tobacco, coffee, cotton, and others, leading to a clear consensus: for Africa to earn more and develop through trade, it must process its raw materials to higher-value semi-finished or finished products.

Processing doesn’t just make food more edible, palatable and safe; it also preserves it so it can be eaten beyond the harvest season. Not to mention, it is a tool that offers greater variety in foods and therefore increases the consumer’s choice.

In general, adding value to agricultural products beyond the farm gate usually has several times the economic impact of the agricultural production alone. Developed countries add over $200 of value by processing one ton of agricultural products. These countries also boast of 98% of Agric products undergoing industrial processing. On the other hand, developing countries like Nigeria add less than $50 with barely 30% of products being processed. (N.B Nigeria produced 11.5 million tons of maize in 2020)

Doing the math’s, there is a huge volume of revenue lost in Nigeria because of action not taken in the value chain of Agro-processing.

What will be covered?

This session will increase the awareness of participants on viable agro-processing value chains they can engage in, either as an entrepreneur or an investor. Participants will be exposed to:


  • What does Agro-processing and value addition entail?
  • The Business Environment (Ease of doing business, Registration landscape, statistics etc.)
  • An estimate of the size of the agro processing and value addition market
  • The competitive environment in the agro processing and value addition space
  • Profit Analysis (A forecast / Cashflow / Wealth creation) – this is a fictional foresight of income generated from agro-processing

  • How do I choose an agro-processing agribusiness to venture into?
  • What are the dominant challenges (if any) within the value chain I should be wary of – and what are ways to manage these challenges?

  • What is the consumption /market pattern for processed/value-added agricultural products?
  • How do I identify my customers/off-takers/target market?
  • What are the key pitfalls to avoid in selecting a target market?
  • Is there a market for value-added products?

  • What is the circular economy?
  • What agro processing opportunities does the circular economy present?
  • Where can one get more information about how to engage in the circular economy?

  • What skill and competence are required to thrive in this sector?
  • What regulation landscape should I be mindful of?
  • How much skill do I need and where can I get expert support?

  • How do I discover investable agro-processing businesses?
  • What are critical signals off a healthy, invest-able agro-processing business?
  • What other things should one take into consideration in deciding whether or not to invest in an agro-processing business?

  • This session is dedicated to answering selected questions sent in by the audience on agro-processing and value addition


Tue, 06 Jul, 2021

13:30hrs, GMT + 1


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