Cameroon’s plans to increase production of cocoa beans by 2020 may affected by the fall in the prices of cocoa. The fall in the prices development experts say may dissuade farmers from planting new crops or create new plantations. Reports say the average field price per kilogram of cocoa beans varies between 800 CFA francs and 900 CFA francs, according to statistics compiled by the information system of the farming sector (SIF). Notwithstanding that last year, a kilogram of cocoa beans was sold at 1,500 CFA francs as compared to the 900 FCFA and 800 CFA francs market price nowadays.
According reports during the 2016-2017 cocoa season, production was more than 250,000 tons, which is still far from the projected 600,000 tons by 2020. While the strategy to increase, output envisaged new plantings of about 100 000 hectares (247 105 acres) every year, Cameroon only achieved growth of 2 500 to 3 500 hectares since 2014.
Cameroon processes about 25 percent of its cocoa locally, according to the regulator, the National Cocoa and Coffee Board. The sector accounts for 3 percent of the country’s gross domestic product and with the falling prices, prospects are high that local processing could be the solution to achieve the 2020 goal.
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