This article examines the impact of the Structural Adjustment Program (SAP) that was installed by the military regime of Ibrahim Babangida in 1986 on the cocoa economy of southwestern Nigeria. The structural adjustment program resulted in the dissolution of the Cocoa Board. The scrapping of the Cocoa Board engendered significant changes in the marketing of cocoa, as Nigerian, and non-Nigerian exporters (Syrians and Lebanese) sought to gain control of the cocoa trade. This resulted in a price war that led to a monumental increase in the price of cocoa. The cocoa boom from 1987 to 1988 was compounded by the heightened inflationary situation created by the structural adjustment program. Prices of farm implements rose and laborers also increased their wages. With the end of the cocoa boom in early 1989, some farmers found it increasingly difficult to maintain their farms, resulting in the intensification of sharecropping. Also, some laborers who had benefited from the windfall during 1987 and 1988 began to buy their own farms from cocoa farmers.


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pp. 151-169
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