The Kwara State Governor, AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq stated that to ensure the improvement of the dying cocoa farm in the State, the Government has raised up to 50,000 improved cocoa seedlings at cheap prices for the farmers once they are fully grown in the next 18 months.
Governor AbdulRazaq made this known at a meeting with the cocoa farmers, which was held at the Cocoa House in Oke Onigbin, Isin Local Government, Kwara State.
Agriculture was once the mainstay of Nigeria’s economy and so did it provide job avenues until the discovery of oil.
The Government, at all levels, has been trying to revive agriculture to diversify the oil-dependent economy now as it has been battered by the fall in the global crude prices.
The Governor, who was ably represented by the State Commissioner for Agricultural and Rural Development, Adenike Afolabi-Oshatimehin, said his Administration would set up a cocoa conservatory in the State, to serve as the source of planting materials for the farmers.
AbdulRazaq stated that the State Government plans to train the cocoa farmers on good agricultural operations through the Farmers Field School (FFS), and to retrain them in the Farmers Business School (FBS) as well, to boost the quality of the cocoa beans that are being produced in the State.
Recently, the Calabar Branch of the Nigerian Export Promotion Council (NEPC), declared the recognition on cocoa as a judicious exporting products, which has great prospective and that can be used to create foreign exchange to build the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) besides helping to retain the international honor.
The trade promotion advisor for NEPC, Emmanuel Etim stated this at a meeting with the cocoa shareholders and exporters in the cocoa value chain. It was held at the Ikom Local Government Area of Cross River State and thorough discussions were done.