Post by Ismail AbdulAzeez on Nov 14, 2019 15:25:02 GMT 1
Nigeria is currently the world's fourth largest producer of Cocoa, after Ivory Coast, Indonesia and Ghana, and the third largest exporter, after Ivory Coast and Ghana. Cocoa was a major foreign exchange earner for Nigeria in the 1950s and 1960s.
A favourable condition of rainfall, humidity and sunshine is necessary for cocoa production. This accounts for its production in only 14 states in Nigeria characterised by rainforest ecological zones. However, the states of Ogun, Oyo, Osun, Ekiti, Ondo, Edo, Delta, AkwaIbom and Cross River states are the major producers of cocoa in Nigeria because they are favoured with the right climatic and soil conditions. Cocoa is also produced in little quantities in Kogi, Kwara, Abia and some parts of Anambra state.
This article further explains the significance of cocoa exports as a veritable alternative revenue source to investors and potential investors.
Impact of cocoa export
Cocoa is a catalyst for a sustainable food system across the globe. Cocoa is called the “food for the gods”. Needless to say, the significance of agricultural export in the total commodity export on Nigeria's economy is so important that various trade arrangements before independence and immediately after independence were formulated around agricultural commodity export.
Agricultural export helps to generate huge revenue mostly in foreign exchange to finance the importation of capital goods necessary for development. It generates a lot of cash income to both the farmers and produce merchants.
Export crops are regarded as cash crops while other crops are called food crops. The cocoa season always come with a lot of socio-activities like ceremonies, festivals etc., as farmers are always left with cash balances to pursue these social responsibilities, because of the financial gains of exporting the produce.
Invariably, the demand for cocoa is on the increase in the international market. Cocoa is the most important non-oil export commodity in Nigeria. Available statistics showed that it is the second highest source of foreign exchange after crude petroleum. Its sales and export cocoa provide employment opportunities and source of livelihood for many people in Nigeria.
In Nigeria, cocoa production is traditionally for export, with less than 10% utilised for cocoa products like cocoa butter, cocoa biscuit, cocoa liquor, chocolates, etc. A sizable quantity is however, processed to create value addition to the export or for local industries as their main raw materials.
Sustainability of cocoa production will surely improve agriculture in Nigeria by increasing the foreign exchange earnings. There are also business opportunities for small farmers involved in cocoa processing.