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Declining Yield of Oil Palm: A case study of Four Oil Palm Plantations in Nigeria and Cameroun

Daniel S. Udom


This paper investigates the achievable yield and extent of oil palm yield decline over time in four large oil palm plantations in Nigeria and Cameroon. In Nigeria the highest achieved palm oil yield was 2.64 tonnes per hectare for 9-year-old palms in one of the plantations studied. By the eighteenth year, the yield had declined to 1.38 tonnes of palm oil per hectare. The Cameroon Development Corporation has achieved a yield of 20 tonnes of fresh fruit bunches (equivalent to 4.20 tonnes of palm oil) per hectare in Ndian. This yield level has, under proper management, been recently achieved in a Nigerian oil palm plantation. It is hoped that this yield level will be sustained over a long period of time. Drastic falling off in yield is due to declining soil fertility and improper management of plantations and oil mills. The need for increased investment in oil palm research and adoption of improved oil palm management practices is emphasized.

[Niger Agric. J. 33 (2002): 32-39]

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print ISSN: 0300-368X