Cassava is a staple food that is highly consumed after rice. The roots are processed into several products such as flour, fufu, garri, flakes, starch and tapioca. Cassava flour is more in demand than any other flour such as beans flour, rice flour, yam flour etc. Ever since Federal Government band the importation of wheat flour, cassava flour became the toast of bakers especially bread makers. This is the more reason entrepreneurs should invest more into cassava flour production to meet local demand and for export.
It is the only flour that can be added to wheat flour up to 10% without changing the texture,; colour or smell of the product. High quality cassava flour can be gotten by processing cassava roots the very same day they are harvested. Cassava flour is different from alubo because cassava is soaked in water to ferment and processed after 3 days.
Processing cassava the same day makes the colour to be
- Snow white
- Low fat content
- Not sour
- Has good taste
- No bad odour/smell
- Can be mixed with other flour example wheat flour.
It will be more advantageous for you to start cassava farming. Because it is not every variety that is good for cassava flour. It will also double your profit margin.
HOW TO START CASSAVA FLOUR PRODUCTION
Thete are important things to consider before starting cassava flour processing. They are; location, accesibility, transportation, waste disposal facility etc.
Location is very important since the roots must be processed almost the same day they are uprooted. It is advisable to build your cassava flour factory close to the farm. Cassava farming is done largely in the villages,
You need a good space for the production of cassava flour. The place should be big enough to accommodate all the processing equipment. And can contain the different processes of milling, drying etc.
NEARNESS TO RAW MATERIALS
It is ideal to source for cassava where you can be having constant supply; in other to remain in the business. Having shortages in production can cause a set back to the cassava flour production business.
The main producers of cassava roots in Nigeria are: Delta, Cross River, Edo, Kogi,Taraba, Imo,Anambra, Enugu, Benue etc. Chose from any of the states and establish your factory.
A means of transporting the raw materials from the farm to factory should always be on ground. So that the production process will not be delayed because of the delicate nature of the roots. You also need mobility to convey the processed flour to the store, market or to buyers.
WASTE DISPOSAL FACILITY
This is very important in other to keep the factory environment clean. The neatness of the processing equipment distinguishes it from the traditional way of processing. Dig a pit to directt used water and liquid from the root into. Dispose the chaff and cassava peel in a distant place. It can be further processed to animal feeds.
This is where the finished products are kept for marketing. It should be closer to the market and should be accessible. An open place that can be located by interested persons; sellers/consumers alike.
EQUIPMENT FOR CASSAVA FLOUR PRODUCTION
INDUSTRIAL MACHINES FOR CASSAVA FLOOR PROCESSING
- Hammer mill
- Packaging materials
- Stiching machine
MANUAL CASSAVA FLOUR EQUIPMENT
- Bowl or pan
- Cutting board
PRICES OF EQUIPMENT
The price depends on the scale of production. Equipment for large scale production 8s in millions.
Prices of equupment for mini cassava flour production
- Grater #50,000
- Press #30,000
- Rotary dryer for 400kg production per day #400,000
- Mechanical sieve #25,000
- Machine for bagging #60,000
For small scale cassava flour production
Hydraulic press for 500kg #400,000
Flash dryer for 3-5 days #3,500,000
Hammer mill #170,000
Bag sewing machine #60,000
Weighing scale #25,000
To establish a cassava flour production factory you must have steady source of water such as well or borehole. In case you cannot afford a drying machine for a start you can locate a company that has the industrial drying machine. They charge per ton, about #2,000 a ton depending on location.
The main raw material is cassava roots. Don’t use immature roots;; use they ones that are not less than 6 months of planting. This is because the moisture content in the young root is very high and the flour that will come out of it will be very small.
If for any reason you cannot process the roots the same day; don’t remove the roots from the sticks and don’t cut the leaves either. This will make the plant appear in its natural form and fermentation will not take place.
Press the cassava below 20% water content because at this point it cannot ferment again. Dry the flour to a moisture of 12% or at most 14%. If the cassava flour is well dried the colour will not change from snow white. The quantity of material reduces by half after moisture removal. That is 2 tonnes will become 1 ton and so on.
PROCESSING OF CASSAVA FLOUR
Sort the cassava roots and remove any defected or spoilt root. After that you weigh them.
Peel the sorted cassava root manually to avoid wastage. Using machine to peel is not ideal because the shape of the roots are not uniform. Employ many hands to do it for you.
Use big bowl with clean water to wash the peeled cassava.
The washed cassava roots are grated with machine into a paste. After which they are packed into sack bag with tiny holes where water will come out from. You can detoxify the ground cassava with a mash agitator machine for few minutes. In other to remove the toxic hydrogen cyanide present in cassava.
Press the cassava mash with machine to reduce the amount of water inside to about 80%. After pressing is granulation. Hammar mill is used to disintegrate the product into fine granule.
Dry the granulated cassava until the water has considerably reduced and they appear to be very dried when touched.
CASSAVA FLOUR PACKAGING
Bag the flour in a 50kg bagco bag, you can give graphic designers to design the bags for you. It should have your company name and number for people to contact you. Weigh the flour first before filling the bags. Use the sewing machine to sew the mouth of the bag. It will make it appear neat and will not allow the flour to pour.
USES/NUTRITIONAL BENEFITS OF CASSAVA FLOUR
Cassava flour is used to make different kinds of food. Bread production in Nigeria is from cassava flour. Cassava bread is good for people suffering from diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure and obesity. It is used in making doughnut, chin chin, buns, meat pie and any other snacks.
WHY YOU SHOULD START CASSAVA FLOUR PRODUCTION
- It can replace wheat more than any other flour.
- Cassava flour has a longer shelf life than wheat. It can last for a year while wheat can stay for only 3 months
- It is more preferred now than wheat because people are more aware of its health benefits.
- Cassava flour producers are few so the sector is yet to be dominated
- Equipment for processing them can be bought locally
- The raw material which is cassava root is readily available
- The demand is high due to our rising population
- It is cheap when compared to wheat. A 50kg bag of cassava flour goes for #10,000 while wheat is #11,500.
- Cassava flour production business is very profitable.
GARRI PRODUCTION FROM CASSAVA FLOUR
Garri processed through manual method will not last long before it changes in form because of the high level of moisture content in it. As such you will be forced to sell them quickly whether you like it or not to avoid lost. But industrially produced garri can last long in store for about a year. That means you can keep them for later sell maybe during cassava planting season. Because you will sell them higher at that time. Cassava roots not processed within 48-72 hours will begin to spoil .
The market for cassava flour is greenish because only few companies are producing for a population of over 180M. Supply to bread baking companies, restaurant, snack producers, individuals and shops. Advertise on the net and offline advertising platform. Export the product to other countries for good pricing.
The ideal method of producing cassava flour is through industrial process. However, you can start small and grow them later. Manual production is very successful during dry season and harmattan because drying will be very fast and fermentation will not have a chance.
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