At least 400,000 cocoa seedlings and 25,000 cashew seedlings were distributed by the Ondo government to farmers in 18 local government districts of the state.
Speaking at the time of the distribution of the seedlings, the Governor of the state, Mr. Rotemi Akerdolu, said that this initiative is part of the efforts of the state government to rearrange cocoa as the first foreign courier.
Akeridolu said that the current administration in the state is carrying out an effective policy to return the state and the country to a favorable position as the number one in the production of quality cocoa products in the world.
He said that "cocoa is a monetary culture number 1 in Nigeria and the second largest foreign currency after oil. Although the country recently slipped from the global 4th position to the 7th position with an annual output of 190,000 tons. At the same time, the Ondo state produces 80,000 metric tons (42%) to maintain its leading position among the national cocoa producing countries.
"To emphasize this leadership position, the Ondo state is at the forefront of innovation and technology transfer in the lower reaches of the cocoa economy, with most buyers having their field offices or headquarters in the state,
According to him, part of the current administration's efforts is to make agriculture more attractive for young people, while he assured that his administration will provide loans to farmers and become a partner of banks to facilitate and access loans.
He noted that the nation is marginalized due to some problems that include: the old age of cocoa farms; low-yielding varieties; problems of pests and diseases.
Others include degradation of soil fertility; weather; old age of farmers; lack of interest on the part of young people; The problems of urbanization and land use.
"The above problems and others have prompted our administration to consciously put in place a program that will stimulate the initiative of the federal government to revive cocoa in the state.