The Cocoa Farmers Association of Nigeria (CFAN) has expressed concern over the quality of Nigeria’s cocoa bean, saying that Nigerian cocoa could be banned from the international market if nothing is done urgently.
The National Chairman of CFAN, Comrade Adeola Adegoke, raised this concern recently during the opening of the association’s office in Abuja
According to Adegoke, CFAN is working with industry stakeholders to improve the quality and quantity of Nigerian cocoa beans.
He said the association is working to ensure that Nigeria overtakes the production capacity of Ivory Coast and Ghana within the next five years.
This will be done through sustainable cocoa production to increase the country’s foreign exchange earnings and gross domestic product (GDP) respectively, CFAN said.
Adegoke said activities to be carried out to increase production capacity will be the launch of Good Agricultural Practices (GAP), a training book for smallholder cocoa farmers, among others.
He said the goal is to grow the country’s cocoa production from the current 250,000 metric tons to 500,000 metric tons over the next two years with the best and highest quality cocoa in the world.
He said: “Our goal as a nation is to exceed the production and productivity capacity of Ivory Coast and Ghana over the next five years through sustainable cocoa production where we will have a larger pyramid most realistic cocoa in the world in Nigeria to develop. respectively our foreign exchange earnings and our GDP.
“We have sounded the alarm about the low quality of our cocoa beans and the need for our nation to be prepared to change that narrative to prevent our cocoa from being rejected now and in the future or sanctioned, which which could lead to the blockage of other opportunities that could improve the livelihoods of our cocoa farmers in Nigeria.
“In the above context, hence the need for our association with other stakeholders to take a stand among others to launch this GAP book in collaboration with the Cocoa Research Institute of Nigeria (CRIN), the Ecosystem Based Adaptation for food Security Assembly Nigeria (EBAFOSA) to achieve transparency and sustainability in our cocoa supply chain with consideration of protecting our environment and biodiversity in a sustainable manner.