George V. Thomas, Director of the CPCRI, which functions under the Indian Council for Agricultural Research (ICAR), told The Hindu that cocoa beans produced locally met only 40 per cent of the domestic requirement.
The remaining was being imported.
said that farmers who grow cocoa as an inter-crop in arecanut plantations could opt for large-scale cultivation in view of the demand.
A cocoa plant yields from the third year of planting.
said that arecanut growers could switch over to coconut cultivation as well.
said that the CPCRI
has developed a technology to extract virgin coconut oil from fresh coconut kernels.