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Project to help farmers

Siteri Sauvakacolo
Friday, April 25, 2014

POOR farming profitability, non-availability of market information and limited business skills resulting in poor market orientation will soon be a thing of the past for some Fijian farmers.

A one and a half-year demonstration project has now started in Ra Province where 100 farmers will sell their cassava to an exporter with prices ranging from 50c per kilogram.

This is a joint initiative of the International Trade Centre and the Fiji Crop and Livestock Council.

A workshop conducted at Burenitu Village this week allowed farmers to express their concerns about how they've been cheated by agents and middlemen for years on crop pricing.

ITC workshop facilitator Mere Naivola said the demonstration project linked farmers to the market.

"There are poor linkages, there is no exporter, the farmers sell their produce at a very low price. This is why we came in, bringing the exporters to their front gate," Ms Naivola said.

"So it's all about linkages — linking the suppliers to the buyers and in this workshop, we brought over a buyer whom we have consulted for many weeks."

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