• Wednesday, May 22, 2024
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BusinessDay

Premium Cocoa debunks factory operation closure

Adopting gas-powered operations will benefit future of cocoa industry — MD Premium Cocoa

Premium Cocoa Products Limited formerly Ile Oluji Nigeria Limited, Nigeria’s oldest cocoa processing factory has debunked media allegations that its factory shut down owing to the recent rally in prices of cocoa.

In a statement made available to BusinessDay, the cocoa processor assured its stakeholders and the public that the claim is untrue as the Ile-Oluji cocoa factory has been in operation since 2023 when it was acquired by Johnvents Industries Limited and renamed Premium Cocoa Products Limited.

“Since the acquisition in January 2023, the 30,000 metric tonnes per annum cocoa processing factory is fully operational,” the company said in a statement.

Read also: ‘Crazy’ cocoa prices cripple Nigerian processors, chocolatiers

“And has been navigating the recent cocoa prices surge in a way that benefits both the business and its stakeholders,” he said.

“Premium Cocoa Product (Ile-Oluji) Limited has been operational since its incorporation in 2023 following the acquisition of the assets of the defunct Cocoa Products (Ile-Oluji) Limited (formerly Ile-Ouji Cocoa Products Limited) by Johnvents Industries Limited, an indigenous agribusiness and FMCG group and one of the leading processors of cocoa in Africa,” it added.

Sunday Bamikole, managing director of Premium Cocoa Products Limited noted that while the recent surge in cocoa prices has undoubtedly impacted cocoa supply across Africa, including Nigeria, the company is actively seeking solutions that ensure business continuity while deepening its long-term partnerships with its cocoa suppliers.

“As an export-oriented business and a subsidiary of Johnvents Group, we have built a robust trading desk manned by highly qualified and experienced personnel who oversee our international trade and manage our sales strategy to hedge our risk during this time, among other things,” Bamikole said.

“In addition to navigating the current market conditions, Premium Cocoa Products Limited is also focused on long-term sustainability.”

“We are exploring various initiatives to support cocoa farmers and are dedicated to finding solutions that benefit the entire cocoa ecosystem in Nigeria.”