LAGOS, NIGERIA — Soybean production and imports in Nigeria continue to rise as the country’s demand for the oilseed is expanding for both food and feed use, according to a June 25 Global Agricultural Information Network report from the US Department of Agriculture (USDA).

The report forecasts Nigerian soybean production in marketing year 2021-22, which begins July 1, to reach 1.25 million tonnes, a 43% increase from the most recent 2020-21 USDA estimate. Area harvested is projected at 1.2 million hectares, up 20% from the 2020-21 estimate.

“Although soybean production is mostly cultivated in the northern parts of the country, Nigeria’s northern states are experiencing security challenges, resulting from Boko Haram activities as well as conflict between pastoralists and farmers,” the USDA noted. “As a result, there is a growing shift by farmers in the south of the country to increase soybean production levels. Soybean production across Nigeria’s south is largely due to the efforts of the International Institute for Tropical Agriculture (IITA) and other international research institutes.”

Soybean yields have been increasing in recent years, and USDA attributes this to “private sector investors putting money and resources into increasing crop output to meet the growing needs of local feed millers and poultry farmers.”

The report said Nigeria’s soybean consumption in 2021-22 is forecast to reach 1.275 million tonnes, up 38% compared to the 2020-21 estimate.

Nigeria’s soybean imports in the coming marketing year are projected to reach 100,000 tonnes, up nearly 100% over this year.