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Import reduction

Luke Rawalai
Wednesday, January 22, 2014

GOVERNMENT'S priority this year will be focused on reducing the amount of imports in food items.

And it is working closely with the Ministry of Agriculture to ensure that food items and raw materials are produced locally.

Speaking at a recent tour in the North, Minister for Agriculture Lieutenant Colonel Inia Seruiratu said the cost of livestock feed and aquaculture raw materials was high because we are importing many of the raw materials.

Lt-Col Seruiratu said most of these raw materials could be produced locally.

"We are working with our partners and this will be one of our priorities for 2014, with the expertise we have we will look to substitute raw materials which we can produce locally.

"Government wants to reduce its import bill so we need to produce these raw materials locally.

"At the same time we are also looking at reducing production costs for farmers so that they can enjoy farming and continue to do so."

He said new crops such as cassava, sweet cassava and corn were being tested for substitutes of livestock feeds.

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