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Small Scale Pineapple Plantation

1         Product Description: Pineapples are one of the most favorite fruits in many countries. The fruits can be consumed as they are in their ripened natural state or they can be processed to make desserts, fruit salads, cakes, certain dishes, dried and stimulating drinks. Pineapples grow in temperate zones and in the highland areas of the tropics. Besides local consumption, the fruits can be exported to generate foreign exchange.

 

2        Market Potential: Among the major fruits sold in the urban areas of the country, pineapples are relatively the most expensive and with limited supply. One kg. of pineapple is sold for Birr 34 while the same quantity of oranges are sold for about Birr 3.50. In fact it is only in Addis Ababa that the fruits are sold. While some quantities of pineapple are produced in areas like Gamo in the South, most of the pineapple supplied to the Addis Ababa market is imported. Separate data on the volume of imports of pineapples is not available as they are included with other fruit imports. However one can safely assume that there is a captive market for locally produced pineapple in Addis Ababa and in a few major urban areas. Introduced by foreign missionaries, pineapple is being produced in the highlands of the former Gamo and Goffa province which is now part of the Southern Nations, Nationalities and Peoples Region. many highland parts of the Amhara Region have very similar climatic conditions with those existing in the South. With the introduction of pineapple seeds to the highland areas of the Amhara Region and the appropriate assistance by development agents, farmers can grow pineapple trees in their backyards like other perennial tree-crops. Production from these backyards could generate substantial cash income to the growers and could also meet local demand. However to have large production volume for the national market and replace imports of pineapples, commercial farming of the fruit is necessary. These commercial farms of 5 to 20 hectares could be established in the highland lands of the Amhara Region. With Birr 36/kg of pineapple in the Addis Ababa market, pineapple plantation on a commercial scale has all the potential of becoming a highly financially viable economic venture.

3        Source of raw material/Input: In the context of a pineapple plantation, the main inputs are the seeds/ seedlings of the plant, suitable soil and appropriate climatic conditions. The seeds will either be imported or brought from the current pineapple growing localities of the country. The other natural "inputs" are found in many localities of the Region.

 

4.   "Process and Technology": The stage of producing pineapple fruits on a commercial scale include securing land obtaining seeds, producing seedlings, preparing the land and planting the pineapple seedlings. Pineapple trees like other fruit trees take a few years to mature and produce fruits. This requires providing proper care for the trees by applying the technical advice of agricultural technical advisors. The final stage is harvesting and marketing. As pineapple fruits are mainly consumed fresh, the marketing and distribution activities should be planned before the fruits are ready for picking.    

 

  1. Estimated Investment: For a 50 hectare of pineapple plantation, the estimated investment will be:-

§  Buildings……….= Birr       80,000

§  Machinery ……    = Birr   100,000

§  Working capital= Birr          30,000

                                          Total    = Birr      210,000

 

6. Benefits: increases farmers income, saves foreign exchange.

 

7. Location: Any localities in the highland parts of the Region.

 

 

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