The adage "money doesn't grow on trees,” has transcended from a simple figure of speech to quite the reality for those venturing into the agriculture sector in Africa. People have come to realize the importance and monetary value of agriculture in Nigeria. So It's safe to say in this day and age, money does, in fact, grow on trees. For several decades, Nigeria has solely been dependent on oil and foreign exchange as a means to boost the economy. However, in the past several years, it has been evident to a nation of 180 million people that those means alone are no longer sufficient to uphold such a growing economy.
With this major negative impact on the economy, there has been a sense of urgency to supplement or replace those old tactics, thus introducing Agriculture as the next viable resource for this rapidly growing nation.
Prior to the 1970's, agriculture was the highest contributor to GDP of Nigeria by roughly 60%. The emergence of the oil sector would later cause the leading contributor to the GDP of the nation to become forgotten due to heavily imported goods.
It has now become obvious that Nigeria is going back to its roots, agriculture. This time around, the perception of agriculture will be different today than it was over 40 years ago. In those days, farmers had no educational background or the necessary resources to grow and expand their farm, therefore, remaining isolated and in poverty. However, this new generation of farmers will be young, educated, business oriented innovators who see this sector not only as a way to help the nation feed herself but as a means to create wealth. Unfortunately, there are still thousands of farmers who live in poverty, and due to lack of resources and access, are unable to reap the maximum benefit of being a contributor to the next big boom in the country.
So the question is, why will more young people gravitate towards agriculture? It's simple, agriculture is the way out for Nigeria. Since the oil sector has turned downwards, the economy went down with it. Every sector in Nigeria has since been impacted by the recession in the country and as a result, thousands of people have lost their jobs over the past few years. More and more college students are graduating with no job offers from the private sector or the government. This leaves many young people with little to no options or hope for the future. With this in mind, one of the sectors moving upward is agriculture. More Nigerians are starting to leave their jobs to become farmers. Young people no longer see working in an office behind a desk for 20-30 years of their life as a means to create wealth. On the contrary, it is becoming more of a hindrance to the pathway to financial freedom.
All it takes is for a handful of young people to create massive success for farmers, and the crowd will follow suit. Success attracts people, and that's what farming will do as more young people succeed in it.
The most recent introduction of digital farming will be one of the leading ways to create millionaires. While most young people won't want to leave their full-time jobs, businesses, or careers to become a farmer, many do have the financial resources to partner with reputable companies and farmers to invest in their existing operations for a certain return on their investments.
While farming serves as one aspect within agriculture, there are other segments of the value chain that can equally create wealth such as exporting, consulting, buying and reselling the produce.
It is clear that over the next 5 years, Nigeria will produce more millionaires from agriculture than any other sector in the country.