Soybean is a leguminous vegetable of the pea family that grows in tropical, subtropical, and temperate climate. Soybean has been described in various ways. Some call it the “miracle bean” or the “golden bean” because it is a cheap, protein-rich grain. It consists of more than 40% high quality protein, 30% carbohydrates, a good balance of amino acids and excellent amounts of dietary fiber, vitamins, and minerals (molybdenum, copper, manganese, phosphorus, iron, omega-3 fatty acids, dietary fiber, vitamin B2, magnesium, vitamin K and potassium, proteins, peptides, and phytonutrients).
Its major producing states in Nigeria are Kaduna, Niger, Kebbi, Nasarawa, Kwara, Oyo, Jigawa, Taraba, Borno, Benue, Bauchi, Lagos, Sokoto, Plateau, Zamfara and Abuja FCT. TBT has farm networks in four out of the nineteen states. It takes about 4-7days after planting to start growing and about 90 to 150 days after sowing to mature. Soya beans has different variations which are black, brown or green coloured, although these varieties are rare. After soybeans are harvested, they are separated into pods and stems and can either be further processed or sold. Some of the products of being further processed include:
Soybean oil: this is gotten by cracking the soybeans which are gotten from the pod, and subjecting it to heat at about 60oC- 88°C.
Biodiesel fuel: After extracting soybean oil you can take a step further by and process into biodiesel fuel. This can be achieved after the oil is refined, blended, bleached and maybe on some occasions hydrogenated.
Industrial use: It is used also for industrial purposes like in ink, paint, and solvents manufacturing.
Livestock feed: After extracting oil from the soybeans what is left od it is called a cake, this can be used for livestock feeding. The soybean hulls, which mainly consist of the outer coats of the beans removed before oil extraction, can also be fed to livestock, as well as whole soybean seeds after processing
Soy flour: Refers to soybeans ground finely enough to pass through a 100-mesh or smaller screen, It is the starting material for production of soy concentrate and soy protein isolate. Soy flour can also be made by roasting the soybean, removing the coat (hull), and grinding into a flour. Soy flour is manufactured with different fat levels
Soy milk: The soya beans without being processed can be used in making soy milk or soya milk which is one of the popular drinks in Nigeria and some African countries. It is also a good substitute for pasteurized cow milk protein.