In West Africa, low adoption of agricultural innovations by farmers has been partly due to the complexity of the innovation structure or new knowledge beyond the farmers’ socio-economic adaptive capacities. Different attempts have been made to improve cocoa beans quality in Nigeria among which was the recommendation of ‘improved cultural practices’ or ‘best known practices’ (ICMP). This had recorded little success because of the complexity and enormity of the ICMP. The present study, therefore, made an attempt to resolve this, in the major cocoa growing states of Nigeria, through farmers-researcher participatory approach with the aid of interview guide. Collected data were analyzed using descriptive statistics and the Principal Component Analysis procedures in SPSS to identify the minimum essential practices out of the overall ICMP for sustainable cocoa production. The result showed that cocoa farmers practiced 47 activities recognized as ICMP which were grouped as nursery, on farm, harvesting or post-harvest activities. The highest overall percentage use of any of these activities was 3 %, while the least being smaller than 1 %. It was found that 13 out of 47 activities contributed 71.45 % to the overall ICMP, whereas the current cumulative percent use of these 13 activities was 28 %. The individual percent use of each of the 13 activities was about 3 %. The highest contributors among the 13 activities were coded ba1 and ba11 while the least was bb4. Efforts to intensify the use of these 13 activities rather than the 47 activities should be encouraged among farmers for sustainable and high quality cocoa production.
Farmer's adoption of agricultural innovations was low in Nigeria due to complex innovation structure.
Improved cultural management practices (ICMP) used by cocoa farmers were identified and the associated yield were quantified.
Discriminant analysis was performed on the ICMP to identify best practices for high quality cocoa beans production.