Fiji Time: 2:24 AM on Saturday 30 May

Fiji Times Logo

/ Front page / News

A boost for sugar industry

Shayal Devi
Saturday, May 03, 2014

IT has taken about 20 years but the Sugar Research Institute of Fiji has added two new varieties of sugarcane to the existing 17 types used by farmers all over Fiji.

Named Qamea and Viwa, these two breeds of sugarcane were officially launched in Ba yesterday by Prime Minister Rear Admiral Voreqe Bainimarama.

In his opening address, he said both varieties were Fijian-made and suited the Fijian climate.

"Qamea took 20 years to develop and it is an early-to-mid maturing variety with high cane yield, suitable to all soil types, no sheath hair, convenient for harvesting by hand and high millable stalks," he said.

"Viwa took 10 years to develop and it is a mid-to-late maturing variety, thin but tall cane, does not lodge, is tolerant of dry conditions, grows well in very poor soils, has high fibre content suitable for cogeneration and has never flowered, meaning that it never stops growing."

He said Qamea and Viwa were the 18th and 19th cane varieties, respectively, to have been developed in the country by Fijian scientists.

"I'm told that for the first time after the research phase, the Sugar Research Institute of Fiji carried out field trials on seven farms to test these new varieties in different environments. After the release of the new varieties, the onus is clearly on canegrowers to make good use of them."

Sugar Research Institute of Fiji acting CEO Sanjay Prakash said farmers had a choice.

"Research indicates that Qamea produces approximately 10 to 15 per cent more sugar than other commercial varieties when planted and harvested at the same time."





Fiji Times Front Page Thumbnail

Kaila Front Page ThumbnailFiji Times & Kaila Frontpage PDF Downloads

Use the free Acrobat Reader to view.

Today's Most Read Stories

  1. Narrow escape
  2. Fijian rugby player racially abused every game
  3. Struggling mother pleads for help
  4. Suspended MP says sorry
  5. Runaway robbery suspects attack police officers
  6. Breadfruit potential
  7. Treasured duty of a mother
  8. Police payout delay
  9. $2m rural town upgrade to commence soon
  10. FSC explains hold off

Top Stories this Week

  1. Hacker's degree Tuesday (26 May)
  2. US Mercy visits Fiji Monday (25 May)
  3. Size doesn't matter for Labalaba Monday (25 May)
  4. Hacking horrors Tuesday (26 May)
  5. Ryan's attention turns to Rio Olympics Monday (25 May)
  6. Erectile dysfunction Monday (25 May)
  7. Three women in custody over alleged vehicle theft Monday (25 May)
  8. 'It's up to her' Thursday (28 May)
  9. Uncertain future Monday (25 May)
  10. To serve and stun Wednesday (27 May)