Following the drive for high non-oil exports Nigeria has exported 1, 983 containers of hibiscus to Mexico alone, thereby generating $35 million within a short time in 2017.
The Coordinating Director, Nigerian Agricultural Quarantine service NAQS, Dr. Vincent Isegbe, said. He also said farmers and other investors are yet to tap into this ‘goldmine’ of hibiscus business in the country due to high demand from Europe, Asia and America.
According to him farmers of hibiscus in Jigawa had the highest export of in 2017, because they are the largest producers of the commodity.
He said: “In the last one year there has been increase in exports of agricultural commodities. Hibiscus alone in one country, Mexico, generated $35 million in nine months.
In 2016, the country generated more than $20 million, and that is just one commodity. In the last one year we have done what we call Export Improvement Initiative, EII, for so many commodities. That means we are bringing those commodities that were lying low to ensure that they are properly positioned for export”, he stated.
“Mexicans and other countries importing our hibiscus (zobo) use it as organic coloring agents for drinks and wines, and as natural blended drink as we drink zobo here in Nigeria, the pharmaceuticals also use it for coloring because is organic”, he added.
He also noted that Jigawa is the major producing state followed by Kastina, Kebbi, Zamfara, Borno and Yobe
He also urged zobo farmers to properly organize and position themselves for increased volume of production and export, which will also create more jobs, and attract more interventions from government and development partners.