Uganda, May 18 -- The price of cocoa at farms in most parts of the country have dropped more than twice in the last one month. By the close of April, the cost of a kilogramme of the commodity stood at Shs31,000.

But it dropped to Shs27,000 at the beginning of this month, before falling further to Shs15,000 per kilogramme last week. It is the sharpest fall in years.

Figures from the United Nations International Trade Statistics Database show that cocoa beans have been one of the country's six biggest exports, accounting for at least $60 million, about Shs226 billion a year.

The rapid fall in prices is a big threat to both the production of the crop and the economy as a whole. Farmers, as is often the case when farm gate prices slump, ar...