Quality, Quantity Production Too!

The struggle by thousands of cocoa farmers in Cameroon to live and let others live is, to say the least, logical. At least they are actors in national development given that their individual productions put together contribute to the national output said to be around 292,471 metric tons (2020/2021 cocoa season). Regrettably, they reportedly earn barely 2 per cent of the 100 billion USD the crop generates globally. This is derogatory looking at the efforts they put in.
It is no news to anyone that every human endeavour deserves reward and some should not labour for others to enjoy especially in a produce like cocoa which has multiple actors along its value chain notably: Farmers, buyers, distributors, chocolate industries, consumers et al.
While national and international authorities strive to ensure that farmers are not kept on the disadvantaged position, there is need to underline that good prices of any produce are functions of quality and quantity. Evidently, the less than 300,000 metric tons national annual cocoa production here and the quality sometimes decried by buyers owing to the amateurish manner in which some actors continue to dry the produce leave farmers at a begging end. 
It has been said time and again that cocoa production in the country, like other agricultural activities, suffers from ageing farms and farmers. There is observably widespread planting of traditional varieties comprising limited or poor use of improved planting materials and small farm size. Problems of poor farm management notably; limited and irrational use of fertilizers, fungicides and insecticides, overly tall cocoa trees (10-15 m) that make it difficult to manage are also decried. All these hurdles coupled with an unclear vision of public authorities to boost the sector discourage many youngsters who would have embraced the sector to achieve the much-trumpeted rejuvenation policy by virtue of their ages, agility and capacity to easily adapt to innovations. Rather, many continue to see how public authorities and goodwill associations keep supporting cocoa farming with machetes, hoes and wheelbarrows. This keeps output at survival level at a time quantity and quality are crucial! 
There is therefore need to cause an overhaul in production and in due course ensure that quality is ascertained. Revolution of farms and farmers is thus imperative. This passes through planting, replanting and tree diversification in cocoa systems. According to a report; “Good agricultural practices for sustainable cocoa production: a guide for farmer training,” published by ...



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