Agricultural Business and Financial Management Project Topics

Commercialization of Plantain Enterprise in Oguta

Commercialization of Plantain Enterprise in Oguta

Commercialization of Plantain Enterprise in Oguta

Chapter One

Objectives of the Study

The general objective of the study was to assess the commercialization of plantain enterprise in Oguta Local Government Area of Imo State. The specific objectives include:

  1. to describe the socio-economic characteristics of the plantain
  2. examine the production systems of the plantain
  3. examine resource use efficiency of the plantain farmers.
  4. estimate the costs and returns associated with plantain
  5. identify the constraints facing plantain farmers in the
  6. assess the effect of socio-economic characteristics on profitability




Profit is an excess of revenues over associated expenses for an activity over a period of time (Pandey, 2002). Every business should earn sufficient profits to survive and grow over a long period of time. Profitability means ability to make profit from all business activities of an organization, company, firm, or an enterprise. It is the ability of a given investment to earn a return from its use. The term “profitability” is not synonymous to the term “efficiency”. Profitability is an index of efficiency. Though, profitability is an important yardstick for measuring the efficiency, the extent of profitability cannot be taken as final proof of efficiency. Sometimes, satisfactory profit can mark inefficiency and conversely, a proper degree of efficiency can be accompanied by an absence of profit. The net profit figure simply reveals a satisfactory balance between the values received and values given. It is the ability of the enterprise to make profit on sales. It is the ability of enterprise to get sufficient returns on the capital and employees (labour) used in the business operation.

Profit is the difference between the total gross income from a venture and how much it has cost to produce and market the product. Profitability differs from profit in a very important way. Profitability is not measured in terms of money, but in terms of return on some asset. Profitability measures how much output you can get from employing a certain amount of an asset (Lutz, 2010).

Plantain Production Systems

Plantains are produced in a variety of planting systems in Nigeria. These were identified by Akinyemi, Aiyelaagbe, and Akyeampong (2010) in their study on plantain cultivation in Nigeria as including:

  • Plantain/CocoaIntercrop where plantain is planted alongside cocoa (Thoebroma cacao) where it serves as a nurse crop during the early stages of  This is common in the Western states of Nigeria and in the Ikom area of Cross River state, where cocoa is an important cash crop.
  • The Bush Plantain which is a complex mixture in which plantains are intercropped within any field crop such as cassava, egusi melon (Citrullus ), cocoyam (Colocasia esculentus) and yams. This is common in the more humid area of the rainforest belt of the country.
  • The Taungya Farming System in which plantains are grown with forestryspecies such as Gmelina arborea The plantain serves a dual purpose of taking care of the trees and serving as source of income before the maturity of the trees. The crops are phased out once the trees are established. This is commonly practiced in Ogun, Ondo and Imo States.
  • The Compound Production system where plantains are grown in variousconvenient points around the compound. Bunch yield is usually high in this system and could be attributed to the application of organic matter from household
  • Plantation production: This is commercial production under

This has rapidly increased in the last five years, but the management has been poor due to lack of technical know-how of owners and/or supervisors.

Factors Affecting Profitability

There are many factors which affect the profitability of a farming enterprise. These factors may include size of farmland, quantity of fertilizer applied, quantity of planting materials used, socio-economic characteristics of the farmers etc. Factors affecting plantain farming in Nigeria were identified by Akinyemi et al. (2010) as land, cultural practices, labour, pests and diseases, post-harvest handling and storage as the factors limiting the production and availability of plantain in Nigeria. On land, he noted that the land tenure system which is mainly by inheritance hinders expansion of the farm. He also highlighted the fact that there has been no change in cultural practices adopted by farmers across the years as evidenced by the continuous dependence on rainfall alone as source of water for the crops.




 Study Area and Scope of Study

The study was carried out in Oguta Local Government Area of Imo State.  Oguta is a town on the east bank of Oguta Lake in Imo State of southeastern Nigeria. Oguta is a socio-geographic community town with a surface area of approximately 2,025.75 square kilometers. Oguta LGA itself comprises 27 villages. As of 2012, that Oguta’s population was estimated at 20,096.. There are two seasons – wet and dry. The wet season is relatively long, lasting between seven and eight months of the year, from the months of March to October. There is usually a short break around August, otherwise termed “August Break”. The dry season begins in late November and extends to February or early March, a period of approximately three months. This local government area was selected because of the predominance of farming activities, especially plantain farming.

Data Collection and Sampling Procedure

 Source and Type of Data

Data from both primary and secondary sources were used in this study. The primary data were obtained through the use of structured questionnaire and interview schedule. The secondary data were obtained from textbooks, journals, the Internet, publications (such as Food and Agricultural Organization FAO Statistical Yearbook etc.), and other relevant literature.



 Socio-economic characteristics

The tables below describe the socio-economic characteristics of plantain farmers in the study area.




This study was on the commercialization of plantain enterprise in Oguta Local Government Area of Imo State. The results obtained shows that 93.75% of the plantain farmers were male and 92.5% were married. The average age was 51.58 years and mean farming experience was 17.98 years. The average household size was 12 persons while the mean farm size was 1.10 hectares. 8.75%, 56.25%, 28.75% and 6.25% had no formal education, had primary education, secondary education and tertiary education respectively. Majority of the farmers (91.25%) practiced mixed cropping, and a larger percentage (60%) relied on their personal savings as source of capital. The results also indicated that an average total cost of N142, 108.86/ha was incurred per annum and a total revenue of N435, 780/ha per annum was realized. This gave a profit of N293, 371.14/ha per annum. The rate of return on investment was 1.97 implying that for every one naira invested, a return of N1.97 and a profit of N0.97 were obtained.

The results of the multiple regression analysis revealed that 90.4% of the variation in plantain output was explained by farm size, labour, planting materials (number of suckers) and fertilizer applied. Farm size and planting materials (number of suckers) were significant at 5%. The resource use efficiency ratios revealed that while labour and fertilizer were over-utilized, farm size and planting materials (number of suckers) were under-utilized. Also, 34.7% of the variation in profit was explained by age, farming experience, household size, level of education, marital status and de- suckering.

The study also revealed that the major constraints faced by the farmers were inadequate finance and credit facilities, wind damage and poor extension services. Other problems encountered included pest and disease infestation and unavailability of fertilizer.


The study shows that plantain farming in Oguta Local Government Area of Imo State is profitable.


The following are recommendations based on the findings of this study:

  1. Thefarmers should be encouraged to form cooperatives as a means of pooling resources together to meet up with the required
  2. Youngpeople should be encouraged to go into plantain farming as majority of those currently engaged in it are aged. This will help reduce unemployment and youth restiveness considering the fact that is a profitable venture.
  3. More work should be done in terms of ensuring that farmers adopt betterproduction practices as most of the famers still rely on manual method of weeding and natural fertility of the


  • Akinyemi, S.O.S., Aiyelaagbe, I.O.O., and Akyeampong, E. (2010). Plantain (Musa spp.) cultivation in Nigeria: A review of its production, marketing and research in the last two decades. Production of Banana and Plantain in Africa. 211-218.
  • Akpan, U.A., Udoh, E.J., and Akpan, S.B. (2021). Analysis of loan default among agricultural credit guarantee scheme (ACGS) loan beneficiaries in Akwa Ibom State, Nigeria. African Journal of Agricultural Economics and Rural Development, 2(2), 121-128.
  • Anene, A., Ezeh, C.I., and Oputa, C.O. (2010). Resources use efficiency of artisanal fishing in Oguta, Imo State, Nigeria. Journal of Development and Agricultural Economics, 2(3), 94-99.
  • Baruwa, O.I., Masuku, M.B., and Alimi, T. (2011). Economic analysis of plantain production in derived savanna zone of Osun State, Nigeria. Asian Journal of Agricultural Sciences, 3(5), 401-40
  • Consortium of International Agricultural Research Centers. (2021). Fact sheet on banana and plantain. Retrieved from research/crop-factsheets/banana on 8th August 2021.
  • Dzomeku, B.M., Dankyi, A.A., and Darkey, S.K. (2011). Socioeconomic importance of plantain cultivation in Ghana. The Journal of Plant and Animal Sciences, 21(2), 269-273.
  • Ekunwe, P.A., and Ajayi, H.I. (2010). Economics of plantain production in Imo State, Nigeria. Research Journal of Agriculture and Biological Sciences, 6(6), 902-905.
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