Things To Know About Cotton Farming Business In Nigeria

Things You Should Know About Cotton Farming Business In Nigeria
Things You Should Know About Cotton Farming Business In Nigeria

The economic value of cotton has grown tremendously over the years. Cotton is highly regarded as a cash crop in Nigeria, hence, cotton farming is arguably a money-raking endeavour.

In Nigeria, just a few numbers of states such as Kano, Sokoto, Ogun, Oyo are known for cotton farming. This has led to a deficit in the supply of the cash crop in the nation. This deficit serves as an opportunity for other farmers or agripreneurs to tap into the economic benefits of cotton farming.

Therefore, in this resource, we are going to look at cotton farming from a business perspective to give you a headstart on how to venture into the business of cotton farming.

Cotton farming
A cotton farm

What is cotton used for?

A successful business solves a problem or renders a service that is put into certain uses towards solving a problem or meeting a need.

Cotton serves as a key resource for the production of many products, hence, its high economic value. Cotton is used in the production of many consumer goods such as fibre, fish nets, book binding,  coffee filter, archival papers, etc.

Also, oil extracted from cotton seeds is used in the pharmaceutical, cosmetics, and food industries. More so, cotton seed is an ingredient in making cattle feeds.
Cotton Farming and Employment Generation

You must have noted that cotton is of high economic value. Well, the economic value of cotton extends to employment generation. Cotton farming from the point of tillage to processing it for byproducts tends to gainfully employ members of a population.

Due to the high economic resourcefulness of cotton, the Federal Government of Nigeria established a Cotton Development Committee saddled with the responsibility of coordinating the business of cotton farming.

Also, the renewed interest by policymakers in the textile industry (cotton is a major resource in the textile industry) is a cue for agricultural entrepreneurs to start considering investing in cotton farming.

Material requirements for cotton farming

In production there are factors, and the production of cotton is not an exception. One major factor of production or material requirement in cotton farming is land.

Matter of fact, land takes the largest part of your budget. Mainly, cotton farming is done at a commercial level, and commercial agriculture takes up large ground space. You will need a large expanse of land for cotton farming especially if you are planning to engage in mechanised farming.

Other, equally important material requirements are seedlings, pesticides, fertilizers.

Cultivation of cotton

As with planting most crops, cultivating cotton begins with tilling your farmland and planting the cotton seeds in the soil. Adequate spacing is important because cotton grows into shrubs.

3 seeds should be planted per hole and a hole should be an inch deep. Make sure you space the holes by 4 inches. Also, you should adhere to a wider row spacing from 38-40 inches.

One or two weeks after planting, seedlings will begin to sprout if there is adequate rainfall because it requires adequate rainfall. Upon sprouting, the plant will begin flowering, the flowers are pink and cream colours. Following pollination, fruits or cotton bolls will emerge then later produce cotton.

Note that during flowering, you should weed the farm and apply pest control measures to give the crops a conducive condition for growth.

Cotton is a very tolerant crop and does not require fertile land. Silt loam soil of PH value of 5.5 is optimal for cotton farming.

Stages of cotton formation and harvest

Cotton farming
Women collecting cotton

After flowering, pollination takes place leading to the emergence of fruit or boll. The fruit or boll splits exposing the cotton. The cotton is ready for harvest after all the fruits or bolls are open. Allow the cotton fibre to dry, this gives a fluffy texture.

After the cotton fibre gets dried, the cotton is picked or harvested with the seed. They are gathered in bales and sent to a cotton ginnery where the fluffy lint is separated from the seeds.

After separation, the now fluffy lint is made ready for textile operations and the seeds are further processed for other byproducts.

Cost implications of the business of cotton farming

As with any other business, combining all the factors of production has cost implications. Thus, in the business of cotton farming, the profit margin is determined by the cost of production.

Cost implications for cotton farming arise from the purchase of farming inputs such as seeds, herbicides, pesticides, fertilizer, labour, implements, machinery , land. Land has the highest cost implication as it could take up the major part of a budget. Depending on location, a plot of land can go for N600,000 – N5,000,000.

On average the cost implications of cultivating cotton on a hectare of land include the following; seedlings-N5,000.00, labour-N50,000.00, tools and implements-N20,000.00, fertilizer-N30,000.00, agrochemicals -N20,000.00. These expenses total N125,000.00.

Note that inflation and the exchange rate value can alter the cost implications as shown above.

Profitability of cotton farming

Cotton farming
Farmers working in a cotton farm

One needs to be diligent, committed , smart to achieve desired results in one’s endeavour. However, in cotton farming, there is a potential of getting high returns on investment (ROI).

On average a hectare of land will yield 2-5 tonnes of cotton. Now a tonne of cotton goes for N155,000 to N195,000. At an assumed price of N195,000 per tonne, a hectare of land can rake in a gross of N390,000 to N975,000.

Now, if compared to the cost of production, the aforementioned sums show that there is a very good potential for getting high returns on investment (ROI).

Mechanized cotton farming

Cotton farming
Mechanised cotton farming

In Nigeria, most farmers cannot afford to engage in mechanised farming due to the cost of obtaining pieces of machinery like tractors, harvesters, ploughs and, so on. However, to fully exploit the economic benefits of cotton farming, one needs to employ the use of farming machinery to engage in mechanised cotton farming. Hectares of farmlands, machinery sufficient supply of other inputs are necessary to embark on commercial cotton farming to gain high yield.

It would be a huge economic step if investors, agripreneurs, and the government started focusing on mechanised cotton farming. Its benefits are tremendous as it would diversify the economy, lift many out of the muddied waters of unemployment as well as create wealth for people.


It is noteworthy that cotton has enormous economic value. It is a major resource in the production of many products in different sectors of the economy ranging from the clothing industry to the pharmaceutical industry.

Things You Should Know About Cotton Farming Business In Nigeria
Things You Should Know About Cotton Farming Business In Nigeria

Matter of fact, cotton farming remains a promising venture in Nigeria and the world at large. There is no argument that cotton can be a major export in Nigeria if attention and adequate funding are given to the industry.


  1. I do like this write-up. I am very interested in Cotton farming as well,because I know the importance and Significance of Cotton in our country as a whole,and I won’t mind if I see like-minded people that we can dive into the journey of brainstorming on how we can do this.

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