Nigeria’s Federal Government on Thursday announced plans to increase cocoa production as parts of its effort to restore the country’s lost glory in the production of the cash crop. Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Dr Akinwunmi Adesina, made this known at Warewa in Ogun during the inauguration of Frangada Natural Cocoa Powder, produced by the Multi-Trex Integrated Foods Plc.
Adeshina said that the Federal Government intended to double annual cocoa production from 250,000 metric tonnes to 500,000 tonnes by year 2015.
He said that a Cocoa Transformation Team led by Dr Peter Aikpokodion, had been put in place to facilitate the realisation of the objective.
The minister said the development had become necessary to restore Nigeria’s pride of place in global cocoa production.
Adesina, who recalled that Nigeria was the second largest producer of cocoa globally, expressed regrets that the country had dropped to a distant fourth.