Commercial oats farming is very popular in some countries as it is an important cereal crop as well as fodder crop. Commercial production of oats is profitable and it is a great way for earning money.
The oat is actually a species of cereal grain grown for it’s seed. Oats are suitable for human consumption as oatmeal and rolled oats and both are very nutritious.
Oats were originated from the Mediterranean region. But now they became very popular mainly due to their health benefits.
Oat meal is a very famous food today and it is rich in proteins and fiber. Consuming oats help in weight loss, controlling blood pressure and for building strong immune system.
Oats grow best in the temperate regions. The oat plants have a lower summer heat requirement and greater tolerance of rain than other cereals (such as wheat, rye, or barley).
So the oats are particularly important in areas with cool, wet summers (such as Northwest Europe and even Iceland). Oats are actually an annual plant and they can be planted either in autumn or in the spring.
Global production of oats was 23 million tonnes in the year of 2019. Major producing countries were Russia, Canada, Poland, Finland, Australia and the United Kingdom.
However, commercial oats farming is a very easy and profitable business. You can start this business for making money, even if you are a beginner.
Uses of Oats
Oats have numerous uses. But they are mainly used as human food. Most commonly they are rolled or crushed into oatmeal or ground into fine oat flour.
Oatmeal is chiefly eaten as porridge, but may also be used in a variety of baked goods, such as oatcakes, oatmeal cookies, and oat bread.
Oats are also an ingredient in many cold cereals, in particular muesli and granola. Oats are also used for production of milk substitutes.
Oats are very nutritious and very healthy. They contain diverse essential nutrients. Oats are 4% beta-glucans, 7% fat, 11% dietary fiber, 17% protein, and 66% carbohydrates.
In a 100 gram serving, oats provide 389 kcal of food energy and are a rich source (20% or more of the Daily Value, DV) of protein (34% DV), dietary fiber (44% DV), several B vitamins and numerous dietary minerals, especially manganese (233% DV).
Health Benefits of Oats
As you can see above, oats are highly nutritious and they are very healthy for human body. Here we are trying to list the top health benefits of consuming oats.
- Oats are highly nutritious and are rich in carbs and fiber. They are also higher in protein and fat than most other grains.
- Oats are also very high in many minerals and vitamins.
- Whole oats are rich in antioxidants and they even contain powerful avenanthramides (which is a very powerful antioxidants).
- Avenanthramides in oats may help to reduce blood pressure and provide other health benefits.
- Beta-glucan has numerous health benefits, and oats are high in this soluble fiber. Beta-glucan helps to reduce cholesterol and blood sugar levels, promotes healthy gut bacteria and increases feeling of fullness.
- And due to beta-glucan, oats may also improve insulin sensitivity and help lower blood sugar levels.
- Oats may lower the risk of heart disease by reducing both total and LDL cholesterol and protecting LDL cholesterol from oxidation.
- You will feel full after eating oatmeal, and thus it can help you lose weight.
- According to some research, oats may help to prevent asthma in children when fed to young infants.
- Studies indicate that oat bran can help reduce constipation in elderly individuals, significantly reducing the need to use laxatives.
- Oatmeal is also highly beneficial for skin. It has long been used to help treat dry and itchy skin.
- Consuming oatmeal may also help to relieve symptoms of various skin conditions, including eczema.
Advantages of Oats Farming Business
Commercial oats farming is very easy and simple, even the beginners can also start this business. Starting commercial production of oats is just like starting any other crop farming business.
And commercial production is highly profitable. However, here we are trying to describe the top advantages of commercial oats farming business.
- As we have mentioned earlier, starting commercial oats farming is very easy and simple, even the beginners can also start this business easily.
- Commercial production of oats is very profitable and it’s a great way for good income.
- Commercial oats farming is already an established business and many people are already doing this.
- So, you don’t have to worry much about starting this business. You will find many farmers for help.
- Oat plants are very strong and hardy. They generally require less caring and other management. So, growing them is pretty easy.
- Demand and value of oats both are already high. And demand of oats is also increasing gradually. So, profits in this business is also high.
- Marketing oats is very easy, because it already has very good demand and value in the market.
- Commercial oats farming is highly profitable and it can be a great employment source for the people, especially for the educated but unemployed people.
- Production costs of oats is relatively less as compared to many other crop farming business.
- As you can see above, oats are highly nutritious and you can enjoy them too if you start your own production.
How to Start Oats Farming
Starting commercial oats farming is very easy and simple, it’s just like wheat farming. Even the beginners can start this business easily.
Although, we recommend having practical experience before starting this business. Here we are trying to describe more about this business from planting, caring to harvesting and marketing.
Oats can be cultivated on all kinds of soil. But well drained loamy soil which are rich in organic matter is suitable for oats farming. Ideal pH range should be between 5 and 6.6 for maximum production.
Prepare the Soil
Preparing the land perfectly is very important for good production of oats. Remove all weeds from the field while preparing the soil.
6-8 ploughing is required for higher oats production. And oats crop can tolerate high pH levels than barley and wheat.
Climate Requirement For Oats Farming
Oat is actually a cool climate crop. They do not grow and produce well in hot dry conditions. 20°C to 25°C is the ideal temperature for sowing, and harvesting temperature should be between 25°C and 30°C.
Choose a Variety
There are numerous varieties and hybrid varieties of oats available to choose from. You can choose any variety depending on it’s growing ability in your area.
Propagation in Oats is done through seeds.
Oat seeds are easily available in the market. You can easily purchase form any of your nearest seed supply stores. You can also consider ordering online.
Generally, planting of oats or sowing is done by drilling method by keeping 20 cm to 30 cm distance between two rows. On an average, you will need between 70 and 80 kg of seeds per hectare.
Oat plants are very strong and hardy and they generally require less caring and other management. Although, taking additional caring will help the plants to grow well and produce more.
Applying both organic and chemical will be highly beneficial for maximum production and it will also increase the quality of the oats. Provide 40 kg of N, and 20 kg of P per acre.
Oats are generally cultivated as a rainfed crop. But this crop require 1 irrigation for every 15 days after sowing the seed in case of irrigated crop.
Weeding is not needed if solid stand is established. However, provide 1-2 hoeing as intercultural operations.
Pests & Diseases
Oats are less prone to pests and diseases. However, common pests and diseases of the oat plants are listed below.
Pests & Their Management
Common pest of the oat plants is aphid. It causes considerable by sucking of cell sap. Applying Dimethoate at the rate of 0.03 percent will help to prevent aphid attack.
Diseases & Their Management
Root Rot and Leaf Blotch are the common diseases of oat plants. Root rot is caused due to root parasite. And both leaf blotch and root rot can be cured by proper seed treatment during seed sowing.
The oat crop generally become ready for harvesting 4 months after sowing. If you want to harvest for using as fodder, 2 cutting should be taken at the rate of 45 days interval and leave for seed setting. Harvest the crop in early April in order to avoid grain shedding.
25-35 tons per hectare if the oats are cultivated for fodder purpose. And around 0.5 tons of grains can be obtained per hectare.
But if the oats are cultivated for grain purpose, then you can expect an average of 1.5 ton to 2 tons of oats per hectare, and more than 2.5 tons of straw.
Marketing oats is very easy and simple. You will be able to easily sell your products in the market. Although, you should set your marketing strategies before starting this business.
These are the common steps and ways for starting and operating a successful oats farming business. Hope this guide has helped you! Good luck & may God bless you!