Cocoa, one of Nigeria’s leading cash crops, attracted the most gains in agricultural commodities trading on the AFEX Exchange, outstripping soybean, maize, paddy rice, sorghum, ginger, sesame, and cashew nut, according to data obtained from AFEX commodities weekly price report.
According to the report, cocoa was up N16,098 or 17.12 per cent week-on-week at N110,098 per contract (100 kg). Maize also thrived on bullish sentiment as it gained N879 or 4.37 per cent at N21,000 per contract on the Exchange.
For other agro-commodities, soybean, paddy rice, sorghum, ginger, sesame and cashew nut recorded flat performances during the week as prices remained unchanged week-on-week.
Ginger traded at N102,714 per contract, sesame was N48,117 per contract, cashew nut stood at N45,576, soybean traded at N35,098 per contract,while sorghum and paddy rice sold for N22,205 and N21,498, respectively.
Commenting on cocoa’s outstanding bullish performance, Michael Martins, portfolio manager at AFEX, noted that the crop benefitted from a rise in chocolate demand and consumption in the international market following lockdown relaxations in Europe and other high consuming regions of the world.
Martins also attributed the price surge to the sustained rainfall seen this year which has made it a bit difficult for cocoa producers to dry their crops, limiting supply at a period demand is on an upward trend.
“For the few volumes of cocoa that are available in the market, there is a whole lot more demand than there is current supply available in the market. So, prices would tend to rise significantly over the coming months,” he said.
The AFEX portfolio manager further averred that the high demand for locally produced cocoa is expected to keep prices positive till the close of the year. He, however, noted that the crop is likely to record a decline towards the second quarter of 2022.
The latest Afex Commodities Index Composite- a collection of key commodities indexes averaged together to represent overall market or sector performance – averaged 427.34 points between October 12 to 18, unchanged from the same figure recorded the previous week.
However, total value traded during the week under review was N226.37 million, marking a 366 percent increase compared to N48.59 million the previous week. Also, the number of contracts traded moved 17.89 percent higher at 1,015,051 contracts against 53,743 contracts week-on-week.
Total number of deals for the week in focus was negative as a total of 36 deals were recorded, an 18 percent decline from 44 deals transacted the week prior.