Soya bean farming in Nigeria

Soya bean farming in Nigeria is yet to be maximized to its full capacity because soybeans farming is loosely operated by small holder farmers who inter-crop it with major crops such as maize, beans, cassava etc.
The global demand for this protein-rich crop nears eleven million tonnes and what’s more? Africa’s annual expenditure of soybeans is about 619tons. So it’s important that soybeans farming is encouraged in Nigeria.

Soya bean farming in Nigeria
Soya bean is a grain legume which is very nutritious and contains on average 40% protein. It can either be used directly for food or processed into soy-milk, cooking oil, infant weaning food and other range of products. It can also be used for feed production due to its high protein content. Soybeans form root nodules which contains bacteria called RHIZOBIA. It is a nitrogen fixing bacteria which forms nitrogen from the air into a form that can be used by soybeans for growth.
Some of the nitrogen are also left behind through falling of leaves and roots which makes the soil more fertile and which is one of the main reasons it is being intercropped with major crops like maize, cassava, beans etc.
TGX1835 – 10E : It is an early maturing variety. It has good grain colour, low shattering and has 15-20% oil in grain. It is resistant to pest, rust and pustules.
TGX1448 – 2E : This has a medium maturity period, it’s not too late and it’s not early. It has excellent grain colour, low shattering and contains 15-20% oil in grain. It is resistant to common pests and diseases.
TGX1485 – 1D & TGX1904 – 6F : It is an early maturing variety. It has good grain colour, low shattering and contains 15-20% oil in grain. It is resistant to common pests and pustules but susceptible to rust.
TGX1951 – 3F : It is also an early maturing variety, it has low shattering and contains 15-20% oil in grain. It is tolerant to rust, cercospora leaf spot and bacteria pustules. It is also tolerant to poor soil.



The following are the guides to follow when one want to go into soya bean farming in Nigeria.
Land selection and preparation : Soybeans can be grown on any kind of soils however, they do better on soils with pH between 4.5 and 8.5. It is advisable to avoid waterlogged, Sandy or gravelly soil for soybean farming. Clear all vegetation with a hoe or with animal power or tractor. Well prepared land ensures good germination and avoids weed infestation. You can plant soybean on ridges of flat surfaces.
Variety and seed selection : When going into soybean farming, select a variety that suits your Agro ecological zone. Pay attention to the maturity period of the variety. Varieties with short maturity period are suitable for areas with low rainfall while late maturing varieties are less suitable for drier environment.
Inoculation : To be able to form nodules and fix nitrogen, Soybeans need to be inoculated with rhizobia. Each legume crop needs different type of rhizobium bacteria, so ensure you have the right inoculant for soybean.
How to inoculate with soya bean legume fix
Measure 15kg of soybean and put in any container
When seed is a bit dusty, a small amount of water (30ml) can be added to it.
Add 75g of inoculant to the seed
Mix the seeds and inoculant very well until evenly distributed.
Protect the inoculated seed from direct sunlight by covering with paper, cloth etc and put under shade before planting.
Plant the seeds on the same day you inoculate them.
Place the inoculated seed in a well prepared, moist furrow and cover immediately.
Applying fertilizer : To apply fertilizers, male furrows along the rows of soybean. The furrows should be 8cm away from the soybean plant and 5cm deep. Place the fertilizer in the furrow and cover with soil. This can be done at planting of immediately after planting. Soybean needs about 30kg P/ha (30kg P2O5/ha) and about 25kg K/ha (25kg K2O/ha). You can reduce fertilizer rates when manure has been added recently.
Planting : Plant seed in the morning or evening to avoid direct sunlight on the inoculated seed. Planting in rows is more advisable, you use the correct plant density, weeding is easier and harvesting takes less time. Plant 2-5cm deep, planting deeper than 5cm may result in vigour or failure of plant to emerge. Fill gaps 1 – 2weeks after sowing when plants have emerged.
Harvesting : Soybean should be harvested 3 – 4 months after planting, depending on the time of sowing and seed variety. Early maturing seeds can be harvested 70days after planting and late maturing seeds can be 180days after planting. Avoid harvesting soybean by pulling as this may remove the roots that contain nitrogen and contribute to soil fertility. You can cut the matured plant at ground level using hoe, cutlass or sickle.


The following are some of the economic importance of soya bean farming in Nigeria.
As human population increases, so does the need for protein. Soybean is largely consumed both internationally and locally. So, producing more of soybean will make it readily available for consumers and alsoeet it’s demand for the ever growing population.
Soybean is an excellent source of high quality protein, with low saturated fat, no cholesterol and great amount of dietary fibre. Making it a healthy choice of food.
Soybean farming can also increase the country’s GDP as the demand for it increased at the national level. Although, Nigeria currently produce soybean worth $85million at the international market.


Soya bean can be sold locally to people that produce soy-milk, tofu and companies that produce infant formulated feeds. It can also be sold to animal feeds producing companies. Soybean can also be exported to other countries, as Nigeria is known to be one of that largest producer and exporter of soybean.
Soya bean are generally packed in bags made of either jute, cotton fibers or plastic. The bags are then stacked on pallets(wooden platforms) to avoid direct contact with the floor. Soybean can be packed in 50kg and 100kg bags for sale.

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