Mrs. Joy Njoku is a farmer based in Badagry region, Lagos State. Over the years, she has been able to grow her business, Chemmang Agribusiness Management Services, thanks to her resilience and a never-give-up attitude.
Trained by Songai Farms in the Republic of Benin as part of a program organized by the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) to help young entrepreneurs in agricultural businesses. Njoku has expanded his pig farming business into other areas of agribusiness as well as a training institute.
Recently, she was recognized by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) as a Model Farmer under the Agricultural Credit Guarantee Fund (ACGSF). Talking about how she was able to transform from an aspiring entrepreneur into a full fledged agribusiness and institute, thanks to her resolve to never give up even in a time when everything seems to have come to an end.
“I trained as an agricultural adviser. I was trained to help develop farms for individuals, organizations and the public. So after the training I came back to Nigeria and started my own farm to show the world that anyone can do it.
“So I started with a small piece of land that I was able to get in Badagry with pig farming and cash crops as well as vegetables. I went from pig farming and cash crops to snail farming.
“In addition, I was training young people to join me in farming. And so far the people I have trained are all over Lagos States doing their own farming, I train them in poultry, fishing, pig keeping and snail farming. I had grown up until 2018 when swine flu hit my farm and I lost all my pigs. I started all over again and today we are growing up here.
For people in the agricultural business, she noted that one of the issues our farmers have is how to get to end users after production. “And because we’re not adding value to our products, we’re selling less than we’re supposed to sell. So what we sell is not proportional to what we put into making particular products,” she pointed out.
She noted that farmers are particularly challenged on how to add value to production and how to break even after production. Therefore, to break even and stay profitable, she said, “I found a way to add value to products by processing them. So I only do rare pigs, I have a slaughterhouse, where I process it into meats and I sell. At present, we plan to export to the countries that need it the most.
On what kept him going despite being lost to swine flu, Njoku said, “well, don’t give up. No matter how hard it is, keep pushing. One thing that has always kept me going is that when it’s tough, that’s where it ends. You can’t have it pink all the time. So, if you are able to cross this difficult path, the end is always profitable. So my philosophy in life is to never give up. Just give your best in everything you do or you will end up reaping a good reward.