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Assessment of Returns to Forest Charcoal Production and Trade in Oyo State, Nigeria

O. A. Fasoro
O. I. Ajewole


This study assessed the returns of charcoal production and trade in Oyo North zone of Oyo State, Nigeria, a major charcoal-producing area in the State, in order to recommend possible interventions for charcoal production that promotes forest conservation. Four Local Government Areas (LGAs) were purposefully selected based on the concentration of charcoal activities. In each LGA, two communities were chosen at random. Then, five charcoal producers and five marketers were randomly selected from each community, making a total of eighty charcoal producers and marketers. Six forest officials were also randomly selected. The data were analyzed using descriptive statistics and simple profit calculation. According to the findings, 82.5% and 42.5% of charcoal producers were male and had no formal education, respectively, while 57.5% and 77.5% of charcoal marketers were male and had formal education respectively. Ninety percent of charcoal producers used the traditional earth mound method. The annual cost of producing charcoal is estimated to be ₦241,595.13k (US$ 661.90), with a revenue of ₦723,495.00k (US$ 1,982.18), and a profit of ₦481,899.87k (US$ 1,320.27). In terms of charcoal marketing, estimated annual expenditure is ₦19,429,344.00k (US$ 53,231.08), revenue generated is ₦24,962,580.00k (US$ 68,390.63), and profit is ₦5,533,236.00k (US$ 15,159.55). According to forest officials, a licence fee of ₦16,612.90k (US$ 45.51) is paid per year per charcoal producer, and a haulage tariff fee ranging from ₦500 to ₦1500 (US$ 1.37 to 4.11) is collected from charcoal transporters. Returns on charcoal production that go to forestry management are so low, and the same is true for charcoal producers compared to marketers. There is a need to improve charcoal producers' earnings and to reconsider forest fees associated with charcoal production. Technology that produces more charcoal while using less wood should be encouraged, and charcoal producers should contribute to forestry development by participating in reforestation programs.