Around 68,000 cocoa farmers in Osun, Ekiti, Abia, Cross River, Akwa Ibom and Ondo states will benefit from the US$22 million food project
The United States Department of Agriculture has announced a $22 million food project for Nigerian cocoa farmers. The project known as Food for Progress will be launched in six southern states of Nigeria where cocoa production is relatively widespread.
king of investors learned that Project Cocoa would be implemented over the next five years.
The program will help beneficiaries access better agricultural inputs, better technical resources, capacity building, post-harvest processing and export marketing.
According to a statement released by the US Consulate, the project will be implemented in partnership with an international non-governmental organization, Lutheran World Relief.
The US Consulate further said that the Food for Progress program will target farmers in low-productivity but high-potential areas, as well as farmers in high-density, high-productivity communities.
“The primary goal of the Food for Progress program is to increase cocoa productivity by leveraging climate-smart agricultural measures.” The consulate noted.
Similarly, Gerald Smith, the US mission’s agricultural affairs adviser, said the project would use an approach that would enable farmers to produce more cocoa and preserve the land’s fertility and biodiversity.
The Food for Progress program is a United States initiative to help developing countries improve their agricultural enterprise.
This cocoa intervention program comes at a time when the Cocoa Farmers Association of Nigeria (CFAN) has pledged to achieve the production of 500,000 tonnes of cocoa beans over the next two years and make Nigeria the largest cocoa producer in West Africa over the next five years. .
Cocoa production is an essential component of the Nigerian economy. Nigeria is the fourth largest cocoa producer in the world. However, the country produces well below Côte d’Ivoire and Ghana, which both represent more than 50% of world production.