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Cocoa Farmers Target 500,000MT By 2024

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President of Cocoa Farmers Association of Nigeria (CFAN), Adeola Adegoke, said with the launching of its Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) training book for smallholder cocoa farmers in Nigeria, it is set  to boost production from the current 250,000 metric tonnes to 500,000 metric tonnes by 2024.

Adegoke, who stated this during the launch of the book yesterday in Abuja, said the book will guide farmers on good agronomic practices and accelerate production capacity ahead of Ivory Coast and Ghana who are currently the leaders in Africa.

He said, “You would recall that we raised an alarm on the low quality of our cocoa beans and the need for our nation to brace up to change this narrative in order to prevent our cocoa from being rejected now and in future or being sanctioned which could lead to the blockage of other opportunities that could improve the livelihood of our cocoa farmers in Nigeria.

“Against this backdrop, hence the need for our association and other stakeholders to take a position among others to launch this GAP book in collaboration with Cocoa Research Institute of Nigeria (CRIN), the Ecosystem Based Adaptation for Food Security Assembly Nigeria (EBAFOSA) for achieving transparency and the sustainability of our cocoa supply chain taking to cognizance the protection of our environment and our biodiversity sustainably.”

Adegoke said the association was willing to partner with relevant stakeholders to make the GAP book available free of charge to smallholder cocoa farmers in all the cocoa producing communities and cocoa producing states in Nigeria.

He added that a task force had been set up on the monitoring and enforcement to make sure that smallholder cocoa farmers follow the required outline in the GAP book, “especially on the safe use and acceptable application of pesticide, child labour free, prevention of deforestation, putting traceability in place, having sustainable ecosystem and good quality cocoa in general.”

“The task force will collaborate with relevant stakeholders in all the cocoa producing states in order to achieve their mandate and help in sustaining our national target of producing one of the finest and best quality cocoa beans in the world,” Adegoke explained.

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