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Top 10 agro-commodities exported by Nigeria in 2022

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Cocoa beans, sesamum seeds, cashew, and seven others top the list of agricultural commodities Nigeria exported in 2022, generating N427.6 billion in revenue in nine months, latest data from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) show.

On a year-on-year, the value of the top agricultural commodities exported increased by 14.9 percent compared to the N372.2 billion recorded in the corresponding period of 2021.

The NBS data also showed that Nigeria’s agricultural export is steadily declining in relation to its contribution to total exports for the year.

In the third quarter of 2022, agricultural exports accounted for 1.42 percent (N84.21 billion) of the total exports valued at N5.93 trillion.

In Q2, agric exports accounted for 1.91 percent (N141.77 billion) of total exports valued at N7.41 trillion, compared to 2.40 percent in Q3 and 2.84 percent in Q1.

BusinessDay identified the top 10 agro-commodities that were exported to other countries in 2022. The analysis was based on the most recent data from NBS.

Cocoa beans
Cocoa is a revenue and foreign exchange earner for Nigeria, and the country is the fourth largest grower of the crop with 250,000 metric tonnes, according to data from the International Cocoa Organization.

According to the NBS, the value of superior-quality cocoa beans exported in nine months stood at N119.69 billion, accounting for 27.99 percent of total agricultural exports in the country within the same period.

The commodity was mainly exported to the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Indonesia, the United States, Malaysia, and Canada.

Sesamum seeds
Nigeria’s exportation of sesame seeds from January to September stood at N101.29 billion, accounting for 23.69 percent of the country’s total agric exports within the period reviewed.

The country is among the top growers of sesame seeds globally, thus making the seed an important component of Nigeria’s diversification plan.

China was the biggest importer of sesame seeds from Nigeria in the period under review. Other export destinations were China, Japan, Vietnam, Turkey, Greece, and Germany.

Sesame seeds could play a vital role in the country’s quest to earn substantial dollars as global demand for the crop continues to rise.

Cashew nuts in shell
The Nigerian Export Promotion Council (NEPC) has described Nigeria as a major and growing player in the cashew industry, with a rising market share in global cashew production and an annual average production increase of 5 percent.

The currently produces 220,000 to 240,000 tonnes of cashew in the shell, lower than when compared to its African peers like Côte d’Ivoire, and Guinea Bissau, according to the NEPC.

It exported cashew nuts in shells to the tune of N60.89 billion in the nine-month period, accounting for 14.24 percent of the country’s total agric exports within the period reviewed.

Standard quality cocoa
The total value of standard-quality cocoa exported to Germany, Malaysia, Netherlands, Indonesia, Belgium, and Italy in the nine-month period was N24.15 billion.

The product accounted for 5.65 percent of the total agricultural exports in the country between January and September.

Nigeria’s climate supports the production and supply of cocoa beans from October to June. This is a relatively long cocoa production period where 1.4 million hectares of farmland is cultivated. Herewith, the country can always guarantee supply.

Cashew nuts shelled
Globally, Nigeria ranks among the top countries for sourcing cashew. Nigeria, according to the NEPC, is a leading exporter of premium quality raw cashew nuts, with an average 48 kernel yield out-turn.

Nigeria earned a sum of N16.93 billion from the exportation of cashew nuts shelled between January and September 2022. It accounted for 3.96 percent of the total agric export value in the period under review.

According to the National Cashew Association of Nigeria, the country earned about N14 billion from the export of cashew in 2021 and is in the process of doubling the annual production of the commodity to 1,000,000 metric tonnes per annum.

Nigeria exported shelled cashew nuts to Vietnam, India, the United Kingdom, the United States, and Nepal within the period considered.

Dessicated coconuts
Desiccated coconut is the grated and dehydrated coconut meat, usually drier than shredded coconut, and is mainly used in the bakery and confectionery industries.

Desiccated coconuts amounting to N13.86 billion were exported to Vietnam and India in the first six months of 2022, accounting for 3.24 percent of the total agricultural exports in the period. The country did not export the commodity in Q3.

Ginger, neither crushed nor ground
Ginger valued at N11.32 billion was exported from January to September. Its exports accounted for 2.65 percent of the N427.6 billion total agro-foods exports in the period.

Citing statistics from the Food and Agriculture Organisation, the NEPC said Nigeria accounts for 40 percent of global ginger production, producing almost 523,000 metric tonnes annually.

According to the NBS, ginger is one of Nigeria’s main agricultural export products, and it has ranked steadily as the fourth- or fifth-highest.

Natural cocoa butter
The NEPC has said there is a lot of additional export potential for Nigerian cocoa butter. According to the council, the most promising market would be the Netherlands. Additional export potential is estimated at $28.2 million up to 2021. Other interesting markets for increasing cocoa butter exports include France, Canada, Turkey and Poland.

Nigeria exported natural cocoa butter to the tune of N11.17 billion from January to September 2022, to Germany, Netherlands, and Estonia, accounting for 2.61 percent of total agricultural exports.

Other frozen shrimps and prawns
Frozen shrimps and prawns accounted for 2.46 percent of total agricultural exports in the period under review.

Nigeria exported frozen shrimps and prawns at a value of N10.53 billion in the period.

Exported to the Netherlands, France, Belgium, the United States, and the UK, frozen shrimp is an essential ingredient for seafood meals; it can be added to salad, pasta, and other meals.

Other cut flowers and flower buds of kind suitable ornamental purposes fresh, dried, dyed

These were exported in the nine-month period, generating N10.45 billion and accounting for 2.44 percent of total agric exports within the period.