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Cacao production and productivity declining

Cocoa (cacao)    Freetown,Sierra Leone

cacao has been in West Africa for many years and it's production level gradually declining. New farmers are not coming up on establishing new plantations. Are there new high yielding varieties to encourage new farmers especially in Sierra Leone to depend on the crop. And where would one get such varieties, in Cote d'Ivoire, etc


Posted by: Ibrahim Shamie (1 point) Ibrahim Shamie
Posted: April 11, 2019




Answers

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There are a number of reasons why Cocoa is not doing well. There is significant pressure from Black pod disease and swollen shoot virus. That has been going on for a long time (since the 1970's). But the recent and strong effects of climate change mean that growing cocoa is harder.

Roughly 70% of the world's cocoa (Theobroma cacao) production originate from the coastal areas of the Gulf of Guinea in West Africa, reaching from Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia along the West African coast to southern Cameroon (http://faostat3.fao.org; ECOWAS, 2007).

We can investigate whether better-adapated varieties exist. But I have not heard of this.

The problem is the extension of the length of the dry season. What is being recommended is more shade trees.

But ultimately the decision needs to be made on the need for a transformational approach to another crop. Have you considered this?


Posted by: David Hughes (55 points) David Hughes
Posted: April 11, 2019


Ibrahim Shamie commented,
Yes, sierra Leone is now promoting the establishment of Cashew plantations nationwide, not actually to replace cacao but as an alternate crop that thrives well and drought resistant
over 1 year ago.

David Hughes commented,
There are likely other crops too. It is critical to think about what markets exist and what money could be made from selling. But the situation for cocoa is not promising. Are you in a farmer group?
over 1 year ago.



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