By Jonathan Ugbal
The ability of cocoa farmers to comprehend and prepare adequately for changes in the agricultural sub sector in terms of pricing is a determining factor for true success in the business.
This and many more were part of the lessons learned from modules delivered by experts in the cocoa business from across the globe in a three day program in Calabar tagged “Implementation Meeting Of The Cocoa Price Risk Management Project” organized by the Cocoa Association of Nigeria, CAN in collaboration with the International Cocoa Organization, ICCO, Agence Francaise De Developpement, AFC and the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment.
The CAN National President, Sayina Riman, in his remarks said the time to act on the issues surrounding the galloping prices was now and described the commodity as “the most labor intensive cash crop that the mechanization in the agricultural sector has not been able to reduce which is the reason most youths shy away from it”.
Furthermore, Sayina who is also the Vice President, World Cocoa Producers Organization, WCPO urged the participants to pay attention to the experts regarding price risk management as the Cocoa market in the country has suffered over the last few years.
He also disclosed that Cocoa and its products gives vigor and vitality to the human body as well as over 250 other health benefits. Jean-Marc Anga who is the Executive Director ICCO in his speech said “the future of Cocoa is bright” and dismissed the idea that there will be a deficit of one million tonnes in 2020 but quickly added it was on a personal note.
Anga stressed that the time to be interested in cocoa was now and pointed out the huge difference in the production of the commodity between Nigeria’s 350,000 and Ivory Coast’s 1.7million metric tonnes is because of the policy direction of the governments.
He however heaped praise on Nigeria for its active role in the ICCO, being a founding member of the organization which began in 1973.
The event was attended by stakeholders in the Cocoa sub sector from across the country including a one time military governor of Kwara state Colonel Pam Ogar, rtd and featured restricted training modules for invited participants anchored by experts on price risk management.
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