Strawberry: A seasonal fruit in high demand
Port Harcourt, Abuja, Kano, Kaduna and so many other states.
“We sell a kilo of strawberry for N1, 000 but when the fruit is scarce, we sell at N1, 500. There are instances when the market depreciates and we sell at N700.”
“Strawberry is a profitable venture. I bought a piece of land for the extension of my farm and another one for me to build a house. If I can get assistance from government in terms of subsidised fertiliser, insecticides, improved seeds and seedlings, bank loan with single digit interest rate and necessary equipment for mechanised farming, I can produce thousands of tonnes of strawberry and provide jobs for hundreds of youths.
“We are calling on government, at all levels, and the private sector to invest in the farming and marketing of strawberry. The system is all encompassing in terms of economic development; it can employ a lot of people. Right now, I have employed eight young men working in my farm. Although there are other crops I venture into, I believe strawberry farming and marketing would reduce unemployment and also boost the economy of our country.”
A trader at Nitel ruits market in Jos who also sells strawberry, Ibrahim Abdullahi, told our reporter that he has so far spent 13 years selling variety of fruits and vegetables.
He said: “Strawberry business is a profitable venture and the fruit has good market these days. It is a seasonal fruit but its market is moving smoothly. Customers come from different parts of the country to buy it from us or from the farmers directly.”
On the challenges of marketing strawberry, Abdullahi said: “The challenges we are facing in marketing strawberry in Jos largely has to do with the sudden change of weather. Right now we are experiencing heat and that usually affects the fruit. If you don’t sell it in time, it may spoil as a result of heat. The second problem is the predicaments of some traders who are hawking the fruits in wheel barrows in some markets within the city of Jos. You know the fruits don’t like too much heat and if it reaches two days that way it could get rotten.
“Despite all these challenges I have mentioned, strawberry is one among the most marketable and profitable fruits I sell, because the demand of the fruit is higher than its production,” Abdullahi said.