Coconut farming is one of the most profitable cash crop farming ventures that can give a good investment return of about N1.8 million every year in Nigeria if ventured into.
Research indicates that this is a long-term investment, and the crop can thrive through several family generations because the trees can continue producing coconuts for up to about 70 years or more.
Coconuts are primary derivative of coconut trees and are consumed by almost everybody in the world. They have tremendous uses, right from the coconut to the water inside, and even the husk, which can be processed into coconut oil, chips, flakes, nuts, and coconut paste, and the husk, which is used for producing carpets, doormats, and brushes.
In 2019, Indonesia was the largest exporter of coconuts in the world, followed by Thailand and Vietnam. The three countries held about a 23 per cent share of total exports, while Cote d’Ivoire, Malaysia, the Netherlands, Mexico, Guyana, and India, all together, made up 17 percent of total exports.
Nigeria has all it takes to become a big producer of coconuts in Africa and the world and earn more foreign exchange. The reasons are as follows: Coconut can be planted in more than 22 states of the federation because the land is very good for it, but up until now, Nigeria has not utilised the resources properly, except in Lagos, where about 70 per cent of the national output comes from.
Also, the global coconut by-product market size is expected to reach $95.64 billion by 2025, according to a new report by Grand View Research, Inc., and the demand for the crop continues to increase globally, this can be a potential way to earn more foreign exchange for the country.
Speaking on this, a coconut farmer from Badagry, Lagos, Ashaka Johnson Onunayan, who has been into coconut farming for about 40 years, said land and soil type determines one’s success in this farming.
According to him, “the land is the very soul of coconut farming; get someone to evaluate it and determine the number of coconut seedlings to be planted because the more coconut trees on your farm, the bigger and richer you are.”