Tunji Owoeye, managing director, Elephant Group Plc. has urged the federal and state governments to reintroduce commodity marketing boards (CMB) to ensure the efficient running of commodity exchanges.
Owoeye, in a monitored report, acknowledged that so much has been injected in developing agriculture sector in the last three years but noted that bringing back the marketing boards is necessary to sustain the tempo.
CMBs are usually setup to manage the process of production, processing and marketing. They also address price stabilization and drive higher revenue from development of agricultural produce such as cocoa, cotton, groundnuts, palm products and rubber.
”Why l believe that marketing boards should be brought back and ensure they are run efficiently and responsibly, is that in Nigeria production and sales are cyclical. During harvest, you have a lot of glut of most commodities because all of a sudden you have so much production that the market cannot absorb. And after harvest is gone you have scarcity,” he said.
”For instance, we used to have Cocoa Marketing Board. What the board used to do then was to look at times of scarcity and glut, then intervene in those markets to ensure that farmers and the value chain stakeholders were not short-changed. They act as catalyst and mediators. I think that should come back.”
Owoeye said that there were farmers and value chain stakeholders that had been in the industry for more than three, four and five decades.
He said that those stakeholders would be willing to support the government in ensuring that marketing Boards were revisited and made to function.