Palm tree is one of the richest trees on earth when it comes to natural endowment. No part of palm tree is wasted, every part of it can be converted into monetary gain.
There are enormous products you can get from palm tree, some are known to us, while some are totally unknown. Let’s look at various things we can use different parts of a palm tree to make: palm oil, wood or planks, palm wine, broom, palm Kernel, frond stall,
Mats, basket, palm kernel, etc.
Palm oil – is the most popular product we get from the palm tree. It is extracted from the palm fruit and it’s used as cooking and frying oil. Palm oil is very healthy and nutritious for human consumption. It is also used for industrial purpose, for manufacturing cosmetic, soaps, toothpaste, lubricant, ink and waxes.
Wood or planks – the stems from palm tree can be converted into woods or planks for making buildings.
Palm wine – palm wine is a sweet tasty drink that’s gotten from the sap of various species of palm tree like the date palms, Palmyra and coconut palms. It is one of the most popular drink in Africa with enormous benefits. It has the ability to fight cancer, it increases eyesight, reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease, promotes lactation and also helps in maintaining a healthier skin, hair and nails.
Broom -there is no home (poor or rich home) you won’t find brooms. Broom is used for sweeping, removal of cobwebs and also used for making ewedu soup in Nigeria.
Palm kernel – palm kernel is an edible seed of the palm fruit. Palm kernel oil is derived from palm kernel seed, the oil is a great remedy for epilepsy, is a rich antioxidant agent that contains vitamin E and prevents symptoms and signs of aging; when applied to the hair it makes hair thicker and prevents breakage, it softens the skin, helps to detoxify the body, controls blood pressure and takes care of body odour.
Frond stall – is used as purling in making roofs.
Mats – leaves fiber obtained from the leaves of raffia palm, are used for mats, baskets hats for commercial purpose and for tying plants and other objects.
Baskets – baskets are made from leaves fiber of palm trees, it is being sold in bulk most times to distance places where they are being used for different purposes.
Advantages of palm tree plantation are: There is no fear of theft. You are sure of getting frequent income and always has good market price all through the year.
It provides local employment, encourages intercropping and has low pest and disease incidence.
It yields highest edible oil among the other oil crop.
The palm tree is a great source of generating income in Nigeria because of usefulness and the huge profit involved in every part of the tree (fruits, kernel, trunks, leaves and sap) used for different products. If there is any agricultural business I can advise anybody to go into, it is owning a palm plantation because this is a business that can serve many generation to come. It takes about four to five years to start reaping the fruits from the tree but it is definitely worth the wait because it generates income for years to come. This type of business requires patience.
Grace O. Abu, Program assistant
Cal-maji foundation, [email protected]