The palm oil plantations span across 1,330,036 hectares of land while coca plantations cover up to 224.8 hectares of land in Sabah.
Cocoa cultivation started at Ranau in 1998. Today, cocoa cultivation has expanded into other districts such as Tawau, Sandakan, and Kudat.
Source: Department of Statistics, Sabah
Most of the cocoa cultivations are controlled by smallholders which then export cocoa beans, processed cocoa butter and cocoa powder to other countries.
Then, it will be processed into cocoa-based products such as chocolate and butter production, flavouring in cakes, creams, drinks and toppings, and other cocoa-based food delicacies.
However, over the years, Sabah has witnessed a reduction in cocoa production as cocoa plantation and cultivation lands wither. In contrast, more space were allocated for palm oil plantation.
Source: Khazanah Research Institute
If the vision of developing Malaysia as the King of Chocolate is to be achieved, shouldn’t the cocoa production in the country be increased?
Source: Malaysia Indicator