IN an effort to boost the beef industry in Fiji, 22 farmers from Nadroga participated in an excursion of model beef farms in the Central Division to better their understanding of rearing and processing procedures.
The two-day trip this month was organised by staff members of the Fiji Development Bank's Sigatoka branch.
In a statement, FDB Sigatoka branch officer Alifereti Tora said some of the farmers were accompanied by their wives who were also involved in beef farming.
"This was an opportunity for the farmers to learn from some of the best in the beef industry and to see firsthand the intricacies involved with rearing of beef cattle right up to the processes at the abattoir where they are slaughtered," he said.
"The farmers were taken on a tour of Tiko Eastgate's farm near Gusuisavu Village in Naitasiri known as Vunikoka farm.
"Mr Eastgate shared some of his experiences and tricks of the trade which were not only simple but also cost effective."
The initiative by FDB started early last year where thorough consultations with farmers were carried out to ascertain the best commodity to generate income - and beef was singled out.
According to FDB, the farmers met Agriculture permanent secretary Ropate Ligairi and Regional Development permanent secretary Filipe Alifereti who assured them assistance would be given for their beef farm projects and other income generating projects for their wives.