Samuel Aende, a 30-year-old greenhouse farmer, resigned from his position in the seemingly profitable Nigerian banking sector to embrace greenhouse farming for a living.
Mr Aende who has been in the banking industry for more than 10 years, put money into the competitive sector of greenhouse farming, a sector he is completely ignorant of because he had no prior formal training in it.
To satisfy his thirst for success in farming, Mr Aende enrolled in several trainings and workshops which enabled him to gather the information required to thrive in the business.
He also travelled to Isreal and Benin Republic in search of additional knowledge and expertise to be able to effectively manage a greenhouse farm.
On his Terjimin Farms Limited, a 12-hectare greenhouse farm located in Masaka, Karu local government area of Nasarawa State, every week, he produces two tones of beef tomatoes and bell pepper.
“Greenhouse farming is very important as it makes products available all year round, most especially when they are normally off-season. This enables market availability, which is a win-win for both the farmer and the consumer,” Mr Aende said in an interview with Daily Trust.
He noted that greenhouse farming could be risky just like any other venture, it, however, requires patience from anyone interested in the business to be able to succeed.
Mr Aende decried the hesitant of commercial banks to give credit to farmers, saying “This is where policies should be developed to target this gap. Interest rates are very high and it becomes very difficult to borrow at such rates for agribusiness considering the risks in agriculture.”
He added, “I have no regrets about my decision, as engaging in this business has exposed me to so much. I have had the opportunity to impact knowledge to people, travel and support other SMEs and NGOs technically with the experiences I have gained. It’s given me a whole different perspective on business and life that I probably wouldn’t have had from the prism of a banker. I am still working and building that dream.”