How Coconut Boost Lagos State Economy With N50bn Transactions Yearly

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Coconut, as a major cash crop, attracts about N50 billion to the Lagos State economy annually as no fewer than 108 products are manufactured from it.

The Special Adviser to Gov. Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State on Agriculture, Ms Abisola Olusanya made this known at a news conference held recently as part of activities lined up for the maiden edition of the international Coconut summit to be held at Alausa, Ikeja between October 22 and October 23.

“The value of production of coconut now is about N50 billion. That is the value of the coconut we have, and so you can see it is a big natural resource, not only to Lagos, but Nigeria. Coconut is a major cash crop, there are over 108 products from coconut alone.The Lagos State Government is doing a lot to rehabilitate more coconut plantations and train more people,” she said.

Ms. Olusanya said Nigeria produced a total of 364,000 metric tons of coconut, but Lagos State produced about 257,000 metric tons of the number, in spite of having old plantations.

Being aware of the limitless opportunities in the coconut industry, she said the Lagos state government had continued to rehabilitate its coconut plantation over the last five to six years in about 180 kilometres in the coastal areas of Nigeria.

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Represented by Dr Olayiwole Onasanya, the Permanent Secretary, state Ministry of Agriculture, Ms. Olusanya said: “With the rehabilitation of the plantations, and what the state government is doing, we expect that the production will increase from 257,000 metric tons to over one million metric tons,” she said.

She noted that by the time the plantation is fully rehabilitated, and lots of people will be enlightened on the need to start using the improved varieties which will equally increase production.

With the theme: “Unlocking the Industrial and Socioeconomic Potential of Coconut”, the upcoming summit, according to Olusanya, will bring together about 500 participants including investors, researchers, captain of industries to brainstorm on the opportunities available in the coconut value chain in Lagos state.

“The summit is conceived to be a platform for stakeholders, local and international in the coconut sub-sector to interact, explore, exhibit and evolve new ideas for sustainable development of coconut value chain,” she said.

“Other areas to be discussed include market trends and dynamics; finance and investments; quality, standard and certification; health and wellness issues in coconut and the environmental issues in coconut.

She further said the summit would feature exhibition of coconut products, equipment and machineries with participants drawn from South Korea, Malaysia, Indonesia, India and Philippines and some West African countries.

Samson Oyedeyi

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