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Impact of Nigerian Institute For Oil Palm Research (N.I.F.O.R.) on oil palm industry in Nigeria
This article examines the impact of the Nigerian Institute for Oil Palm Research (NIFOR) on oil palm industry in Nigeria. It interfaces of achievements and developmental strides of the Institute on oil palm industry in Nigeria from its was establishment during colonial period as Oil Palm Research Station (OPRS.) in 1939 through to 1950 when its mandate was extended to British West Africa countries as West African Institute for Oil Palm Research (WAIFOR.) up to its present status as Nigerian Institute for Oil Palm Research (NIFOR). Through research efforts of its highly rated scientists, the Institute has transformed the wild oil palm of the pre-colonial era to the improved and high yielding ones being cultivated in individuals and corporate plantations today. The Institute has also invented simple and cost effective equipment for the processing and preserving palm products such as oil, kernel and palm wine. In recent time, the Institute has extended its research endeavours beyond its original mandate to include date palm, coconut, date palm, coconut palm, Raphia palm and Shea tree. All these efforts have impacted positively on oil palm industry which if sustained, crude palm oil would provide viable source of foreign exchange for the country. The article however concludes that there is need for adequate funding of the Institute by governments at all levels and corporate bodies to enable it achieve the objectives for which it was established.