Wednesday, April 24, 2024

AFEX Launches Planting of 1 Million Cocoa Trees

The Nigeria’s leading commodities exchange operator, AFEX, has launched the one million cocoa tree planting initiative, to ensure sustainability of cocoa production across cocoa-producing states in the country.

The Nigeria’s leading commodities exchange operator, AFEX, has launched the one million cocoa tree planting initiative, to ensure sustainability of cocoa production across cocoa-producing states in the country.

The flag-off ceremony was held at the Ooni’s palace in Ile-Ife, Osun State, hosted by His Imperial Majesty (H.I.M), Ooni Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi, Ooni of Ife, with the presence of other dignitaries and government officials.

AFEX, since its launch in 2014 has worked to improve the livelihoods of smallholder farmers across major grain-growing states in Nigeria with over 126 warehouses in Nigeria, and Kenya, and storage capacity of 314,000MT.

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The organization had developed and deployed a viable commodities exchange model for the African market to leveling-up Africa’s agro-tech sector, by bridging the gap between Agro-processors and investors to boosts food security and makes food production more efficient.

AFEX CEO Ayodeji Balogun, while speaking during the flag-off ceremony noted that their plan is to plant one million cocoa trees, starting with the first phase of distributing 200,000 cocoa seedlings to cocoa farmers.

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He further explained that the seedlings are improved breed resulted from 12 years of research and that they would start flowering in about 18 months of planting and are able to produce 5 times the yield of earlier varieties.

“In addition to the seedlings provided, we would monitor the planting and growing processes of these cocoa farmers. We are delighted to launch this initiative with the Government and key stakeholders to create an enabling environment where the cocoa industry can thrive.” Balogun added

Commissioner for Agriculture and food security for Osun State, Adedayo Adewole, disclosed that the government is delighted to work along with institutions like AFEX, to encourage farmers and youths in the sector in strengthen their productivity and provide a safer, more secure environment for cocoa farmers.

 

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