Summary: Oil Palm Industry
- Topic: Oil Palm Industry
- Text: New Oxford Secondary English Course for SSS2 page 22
- Passage Questions & Answers
Read the following passage carefully and answer the questions that follow:
Oil Palm Industry:
About thirty years ago, Nigeria was a large exporter of palm oil and had been for many years before then.
You have probably read about the oil rivers of the last century. Well, they were not-so called because there were oil rigs dotted around them as now, but because of the export of palm oil from the region.
Palm oil is also very important to us at home as we use it a great deal in our cooking. Some of you may like groundnut oil soup better, but it is not as good for you as palm oil. Palm oil is rich in vitamins A and D and helps to protect us from diseases. So isn’t it a pity that today we have become importers of palm oil instead of exporters?
There are many reasons for this. First, the civil war destroyed many oil farms in the areas where it was the main livelihood of the people. The south of our country is a natural home of palm trees, having the right conditions, a hot humid climate and rich soil. Then the petroleum boom in the country hit like a cyclone. It had a devastating effect on the palm oil industry as upon agriculture in general. In a get-rich-quick rush to the urban centres by people looking for jobs in the new industries and factories, young men forgot all about harvesting the oil palms: there was easier money to be picked up and an exciting city life as well.
As a result, people like me who had modest oil palm farms in the south had the heartbreak of being unable to keep their farms weeded, let alone get nuts harvested.
So it was, that gradually, or not so gradually, we became importers instead of exporters of palm oil.
For some years now, successive Federal Governemnts have been worried about this. They have realised that it is essential to revive this vital industry so that instead of costing us precious foreign exchange, palm oil can earn us a little more of those much-needed currencies provided we produce high-quality oil in sufficient quantity.
The five hundred million naira that the Federal Government has injected into the industry in an effort to reactivate it should prove an effective shot in the arm. As well as opening a seven hundred million naira Federal Oil Mill at Elere Adubi in Ifo Ota, the Federal Government is urging the private sector industrialists to go into oil palm planting and processing. In addition, in order to ensure that A seedling is a young plant that has been grown from a seed. More are available to prospective farmers, it has also directed each state Ministry of Agriculture to set up an extension service board. Finally, local farmers are being encouraged to intensify the harvesting of oil palm produce and to establish new oil palm farms to make sure that the new mill has a regular and sufficient supply of raw materials.
Questions and Answers:
1. State in three sentences, one sentence each, the three reasons that the writer gives for the decline of the oil palm industry.
A – The three reasons the writer gives for the decline of the oil palm industry are:
i. The civil war destroyed many oil farms.
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