The USDA Food for Progress TRACE Project Launches at CFAN’s 2nd Annual Cocoa Festival in Nigeria

  • Kat Fiske
  • Oct 12, 2023
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The USDA Food for Progress Program

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The USDA Food for Progress Program helps developing countries and emerging democracies modernize and strengthen their agricultural sectors. U.S. agricultural commodities donated to recipient countries are sold on the local market and the proceeds are used to support agricultural, economic, or infrastructure development programs. Food for Progress has two principal objectives: to improve agricultural productivity and to expand trade of agricultural products. For more information, visit

Launching the USDA Food for Progress TRACE Project

On October 19, 2023, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food for Progress Traceability and Resilience in Agriculture and Cocoa Ecosystems (TRACE) Project officially launched amongst key stakeholders in Nigeria’s cocoa industry during the Cocoa Farmers Association of Nigeria’s (CFAN) 2nd Annual Cocoa Festival.  

After an engaging discussion about “Upscaling Nigeria Cocoa Sustainability Towards 2025” on October 18, festival attendees, including cocoa farmers, government officials, researchers, and private sector actors, learned more about the USDA Food for Progress TRACE Project, which Lutheran World Relief is to lead the implementation of across the cocoa-producing states of Abia, Akwa Ibom, Cross River, Ekiti, Ondo, and Osun.

CFAN’s Annual Cocoa Festival is the perfect opportunity to inform the ‘who’s who’ in the Nigeria cocoa industry of the USDA Food for Progress TRACE Project. We are excited to already be partnering with many in the audience and look forward to building new awareness and bridges with others there that will pave even more roads to success for us.

– Nene Akwetey-Kodjoe, Chief of Party for TRACE

Funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food for Progress Program, the TRACE Project promotes climate-smart agriculture to increase agricultural productivity in Nigeria’s cocoa value chain and improves the traceability of cocoa in Nigeria, thereby expanding its marketability. Through the project, it is expected that over 51,000 smallholder farmers will be trained in improved agricultural production techniques and business practices, 114 farmer organizations will increase their business performance, and more than 68,400 farmers will gain access to markets.

The project’s consortium of partners, including the federal and state governments of Nigeria, the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA), the Cocoa Research Institute of Nigeria (CRIN), Ecometrica, and, joined Lutheran World Relief at the cocoa festival to speak to their areas of expertise and the roles they will play throughout the project.

The festival concluded with an exhibition of cocoa products and offered the opportunity for attendees to network and spark the synergies and innovations that will ensure the growth of Nigeria’s cocoa industry.

Watch the recorded livestream of the event

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Kat Fiske, Oct 12, 2023 email