If you want to succeed in any business, you first need to learn the art of casting your net where the fish is. One business opportunity that can help you cast your net wider is that of processing sugar cane juice and selling to the public. This trend has already gathered momentum around the coastal area, Nairobi and Kisumu are also getting started.
This business thrives in places with warm temperatures as people seek to restore energy and quench thirst.
Initially, the idea might sound petty, but a planned and well-run sugarcane juice business can be a major profit earning venture in Kenya and Africa in general. Let us take a closer look at what you basically need to set up such a business.
Step 1: Spotting The Opportunity
This business do not only do well in populated place with a community of mostly people who earn above Ksh10,000 per month, but you can also locate it even in slum as well and still make some sales. It’s virtually a business that you can start anywhere in this country, although hot, coastal, and semi-arid areas seem to have the best fortunes. Normally, sales are better during the hot season than during the cold season (for obvious reasons).
Step 2: Get The Machine
A sugarcane crusher or juicer is the most important asset you will need to conduct this business. If you are a small investor, then you can start with a small manual machine which is made by Jua Kali artisans around the country. On the other hand, if you are planning to set up a more organized and efficient outlet, then an electric machine would be your best investment option.
Step 3: Book an Outlet
There are two options when it comes to booking an outlet. First, you can choose to go all out and lease a space in one of the busy streets along major urban centres in the country.
That will, of course, necessitate a county single business permit license and rent payment (the advantage being that you will most likely get more customers). The second option is to put the machine in your home and market your products door-to-door or through online media until you generate enough market to sustain a fully-fledged outlet (this is a cheaper alternative but you may not get many customers).
- A small space of 5×5 square feet would be ideal.
Step 4: Put Your Tools of Trade Together
Now that you have spotted the opportunity, bought a machine, and identified an outlet, you are pretty much almost ready to get started. The only few tools remaining are: aprons, hygienic gloves, drinking glasses, glass jars, and a dustbin in which to collect the sugar cane remains.
Remember, since this is a food and beverage business, you basically want to ensure that you are upholding the highest possible levels of hygiene.
Step 5: Get Your Canes And Start
As you set up your business, be sure to shop around for the cheapest sources of quality cane. If you have means, you can order directly from places like Kisii and Western Region where canes are sold at throw-away prices. The good thing with sugarcane is that they are not highly perishable, and hence, you can acquire your weekly supply in bulk.
How Much To Invest
A good electrical sugar juicer goes for between Ksh100,000 and Ksh150,000. Overall, it will cost you a maximum of Ksh200,000 to set up the business, including paying rent, licenses, and acquiring tools.
Machine – Ksh125,000
Sugar Cane – Ksh10,000
Licenses – Ksh10,000
Tools – Ksh10,000
TOTAL = Ksh155,000
How Much To Expect
A meter long cane can produce 4 litres of cane juice. You can purchase such a cane for about Ksh30/- and sell the juice produced for Ksh400 translating to nearly 10 times returns. On a good day you can sell about Ksh10,000.
- A cup of cane juice goes forKsh50/- in Kayole area of Nairobi, the same goes for Ksh100/- in Kileleshwa area of Nairobi
- In the coastal areas, sugar cane juice is commonly known as “mkwaju”
- The baggase (waste) that remains after the sugarcane has been crushed can be sold to farmers as animal feeds
This is a good idea, particularly if you identify a good place to locate your business and if you invest in good marketing and customer maintenance tactics. For instance, you can introduce different sugar cane juice flavours by adding some ginger and lime to your drink. In addition, you can introduce a fruit juicing business on the side – this will support you when the sugar cane juice business is not performing well.