As part of measures to boost food production and promote the Coconut Value Chain, the Lagos State Coconut Development Authority (LASCODA) has organised a study tour for 300-level students of the Department of Botany, Lagos State University (LASU).
In his remarks, the General Manager of LASCODA, Mr. John Olakulehin, said the study tour is, among others, aimed at familiarising the students with the downstream sector of the coconut value chain, particularly in the area of utilisation and processing.
Olakulehin, who spoke through Mr. Olatunji Amusat, explained that the tour had exposed the students to a first-hand experience of the rudiments of Coconut Oil Processing and access to multimillion naira oil processing equipment such as Coconut Crusher, Coconut Cutter, Coconut Oil Expeller and Coconut Oil Filter with a daily capacity of processing close to 5,000 nuts for the production of 3,000 litres of Virgin Coconut Oil.
He said the study tour was also used as an opportunity to educate the students on the best agronomic practices of coconut production from the nursery to harvesting.
According to him, “This study tour, which was full of practical experiences, has further exposed the students to the functions of each coconut processing equipment as they were able to compare the manual processing to the mechanised processing”.
Dr. Abdulazeez Ogbe, a Senior Lecturer and Team Leader, said: “The study tour has afforded the students the opportunity to further understand the benefits of the coconut value chain, especially as it relates to health, tourism, environment, the economy as well as wealth and job creation”.
Ogbe promised that Lagos State University will continue to collaborate with LASCODA in the areas of research on the Coconut Value Chain in order to improve the production and processing towards ensuring its contribution to Lagos State economy.