Kenaf Farming in Nigeria: The Ultimate Guide on How to Grow Kenaf - Veggie Grow

Kenaf Farming in Nigeria: The Ultimate Guide on How to Grow Kenaf

Kenaf farming is the cultivation of kenaf crop from the stage of seeding to the final stage of harvesting and processing the kenaf seeds and fibres to other products.

Kenaf farming has been described as one of the most lucrative farming ventures in Nigeria, however, only a few people know how profitable the cultivation of kenaf can be.

It is not uncommon to see farmers who planted 2kg of kenaf seeds and harvested 65kg of kenaf seeds. The price of kenaf seed per kg is N2500. In this case, if you invest N5,000, you may likely get a sales revenue of N162,500.

kenaf farming in nigeria

What is Kenaf?

Kenaf known as Hibiscus Cannabinus, it is a highly yielding fibre crop which is used for the production of a variety of products.

Kenaf is known for its fast growing characteristics. It is of the hibiscus family. Kenaf is similar to Jute; they share almost the same characteristics.

Kenaf is usually grown in tropical areas. Kenaf can be grown in almost all the states of Nigeria.

Characteristics of Kenaf

The following are the characteristics of kenaf as a crop:

  • Kenaf is an annual herbaceous crop and can grow up to 3.5 metres in height.
  • The seeds can be ready to harvest after 3-5 months.
  • Kenaf produces fibres which can be used to produce a lot of products.
  • The leaves of kenaf are about 12cm long.

The Uses of Kenaf

The following are the uses of kenaf:

  • Kenaf fibre can be used for the production of ropes and bags. In Nigeria, kenaf fibre is not being used for the production of sacks for the storage of grains and other food items.
  • Kenaf fbre can also be used for the production of wood.
  • Kenaf fibre can be used for the production of pepper.
  • Kenaf fibre can be used for the production of clothing material.
  • Kenaf fibre can be used for the production of growing media and bedding materials for animals.
  • Kenaf seed oil can be used for the production of resin, lubricants and biofuel.
  • Kenaf fibre can be used for the manufacturing of some automotive parts.

How to start kenaf farming in Nigeria

To be successful in kenaf farming, the following steps have to be taken:

Get a farmland in a suitable location

Kenaf can grow in almost all states in Nigeria. Nigeria is in the tropical belt which supports the cultivation of kenaf crop.

It is advisable that you get a farmland in a location that is easily accessible so that you can evacuate your produce without any problems. All the states in the northern part of Nigeria and most states in the southern part of Nigeria are suitable for the growing of kenaf.

Soil Preparation

Kenaf can grow well in poor soil, even soil that is acidic. However, it is better if you prepare your soil and add manures and fertilizers.

Taking off unwanted trees and weeds, plowing, harrowing and ridging may be beneficial to the growing of kenaf.

Staff Recruitment

Kenaf is a hardy crop, so you may not need to engage highly skilled agronomists. If you have skilled agronomists, it’s a plus.

You should engage labourers and other farm hands to tend to the kenaf crop so you can get an optimum yield.

Mechanisation can reduce the need for human labour.


Kenaf is a fantastic crop; it can grow in very poor soils. However, it is still advised you use manure and fertilizers so that you can optimize your kenaf crop’s yield.

Fertilizers like NPK fertilizer, potassium fertilizers and phosphorus fertilizers can be used.

Manure can also be used to improve the condition of the soil before the actual planting of the seeds of kenaf.


Pesticides are needed for preventative and curative actions on your kenaf farm. You may need nematicides, fungicides, insecticides and acaricides for your kenaf farm.

With good pesticides, you can be sure that your kenaf farm will be free of pests and diseases.


The harvest of kenaf seeds and fibres come after 4-8 months. Harvest is done by cutting the fibres.

The seeds can also be harvested by hand.

Irrigation for Kenaf Farming

Irrigation is needed if you really want to be successful in your kenaf farming venture. Yes, you can cultivate kenaf with rains but you may not hit the optimum yield.

Due to the effects of climate change, the rains are unpredictable. You may plant in the rainy season and not get enough rainfall. This is why you need to invest in irrigation.

Drip irrigation is the best type of irrigation for kenaf farming. With drip irrigation, water and power can be conserved.

Drip irrigation also ensures that water only goes to the root zone where it is most needed.

With drip irrigation, soluble fertilizers and chemicals can be passed to the root zones of the crops in a process called Fertigation and Chemigation.

Drip irrigation can increase the yield of kenaf by as much as 100 – 200%.

The market for kenaf in Nigeria

The stoppage of access of forex for importers of papers, jute bags and other fibre products by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has boosted the demand for kenaf fibre in Nigeria.

A lot of producers of jute bags, paper and other fibre products in Nigeria are now looking at sourcing kenaf fibre locally.

As a kenaf farmer, you will have a lot of demand if you have kenaf fibres for sale. The key production points of kenaf fibres in Nigeria are in the state of Kogi, Lagos, Ogun, Benue and other states in Nigeria.

Kenaf Varieties in Nigeria

The following are the main varieties of kenaf seeds in Nigeria:

Ifeken D1 400

This kenaf variety has a high fibre yield and the stalk diameter is relatively uniform. It can grow in the rain forest belt and the savannah belt of Nigeria.

The yield of this variety is 0.7 tonnes per hectare.

Ifeken 400

This kenaf variety is highly tolerant to nematode disease. This variety does well in the forest and savannah zones of Nigeria.

The yield of this variety is about 1.1 tonnes per hectare.

Source:  Seed Portal

Do you want to grow kenaf in Nigeria? If yes, kindly contact us on 08025141924 for advice and purchase of the inputs needed.

Ayo Akinfolarin

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