National president of Cocoa Farmers Association of Nigeria (CFAN), Comr Adeola Adegoke has called for the establishment of Cocoa Trust Fund.
According to Adegoke, the establishment of the trust fund will address poor funding and low investment and help revamp the cocoa sector for job creation and improve foreign exchange earnings for the country.
Speaking on the theme, “Nigeria Cocoa Industry : Past, Present and Future”, at the Cocoa Summit and Awards in Abuja, he said millions of livelihoods are threatened daily as a result of the dwindling cocoa production and productivity which is presently at 300-400 kg/m per hectare of land.
He added that the sector has lost 40 percent of its proceed annually due to the advent of climate change, poor quality cocoa bean and lost to illegal activities.
He noted that the consequences of the nation unregulated cocoa industry has deprived Nigeria smallholder cocoa farmers about fifty five billion naira yearly as a result of Nigeria not joining Ivory coast and Ghana in the collection of $400 per ton known as Living Income Differential (LID) paid to Cocoa farmers.
Adressing participants at the event, minister of agriculture and rural development, Dr Mohammad Mahmood Abubakar disclosed that the ministry has drafted the National Cocoa Plan (2021-2030) to promote a sustainable cocoa economy, resurgence in production and industrialisation to trigger a robust consumption, farmgate prosperity and youth engagement.