Botanically, maize (Zea mays) belongs to the grass family (Gramineae) and is a tall annual plant with an extensive fibrous root system. It is a cross pollinating species, with the female (ear) and male (tassel) flowers in separate places on the plant. The grain develops in the ears, or cobs, often one on each stalk; each ear has about 300 to 1 000 kernels, weighing between 190 and 300 g per I 000 kernels, in a variable number of rows (12 to 16). Weight depends on genetic, environmental and cultural practices. Grain makes up about 42 percent of the dry weight of the plant. The kernels are often white or yellow in colour, although black, red and a mixture of colours are also found. Maize farming and production is a high-potential business opportunity in Africa. Did you know that by planting just one seed of maize, you get over 500 kernels in return at harvest? That’s an incredible return on investment!