Bell pepper, also known as sweet pepper, is one of the most commonly employed chili pepper in Capsicum Annum family.
The most common colors of bell pepper are green, yellow, orange and red. Red bell peppers are simply ripened green peppers.
The bell pepper is the only member of the Capsicum genus that does not produce capsaicin a lipophilic chemical that can cause a strong burning sensation when it comes in contact with mucous membranes of the tongue.
Botanically speaking, bell peppers are fruit, although they are considered vegetables in a culinary context. Fresh bell peppers, red or green are a rich source of vitamin- C.
This vitamin is particularly concentrated in red peppers at the highest levels.100g red pepper provides about 127.7 µg or about 213% of RDA of vitamin-C.
Vitamin –c is a potent water-soluble antioxidant which helps develops resistance against infections, boost immune and scavenge harmful, pro-inflammatory free radicals from the human body.
According to the 2007 statistic, Nigeria is the 7th largest producer of Bell pepper in the world with the production rate of 723,000MT and exporting bell pepper is yet to be maximized in Nigeria.
Well-packaged, blended bell peppers (fresh or dried) with an outstanding label or branding will sell well in Nigeria and other countries. Moreover, producing a pepper paste won’t hurt anyone.
Entrepreneurs should consider venturing into blended Bell pepper production and export, this will also reduce the number of wastages recorded.
The ideal growing condition of bell peppers is within a soil temperature of 21 to 29 °C (70 to 84 °F) that is; it should be kept moist but not waterlogged. They are just usually sensitive to excess moisture and extreme temperature.
Planting season is almost here, maybe you should give bell pepper farming a try, you can never tell when the next future Dangote will take off.
From Anchau Market in Kaduna state, 40kg of fresh bell pepper is currently sold for NGN3500 and in Muda Lawal Market of Bauchi, it sells for NGN4500.
Contact Novus Agro for a current and updated price information and analysis on over 35 Agro commodities from 103 markets across 36 states and FCT of Nigeria.
Chiamaka Onyebuchi, Digital Marketing Strategist, Novus Agro Nig.