Agriculture donation to boost service delivery to farmers

EU Head of delegation Mr Christopher Wagner (right) hands over the document to Director Research Dr. Apaitia Macanawai. Picture: SUPPLIED

THE handover of agriculture equipment and the green house will further boost service delivery to farmers.

Director for Research Division of the Ministry of Agriculture, Dr Apaitia Macanawai said this while acknowledging CePACTs ongoing support to the Ministry of Agriculture and EU’s generous donation.

Farmers in Sigatoka and Seaqaqa will now be able to produce quality vegetables and fruits after the handover of a new greenhouse by the European Union.

The project is funded by the EU under the  “Improving of Key Services to Agriculture (IKSA)” program with the Ministry of Agriculture.

Programme Head-Genetic Resources at the Pacific Community (SPC), Dr Michel Ghanem said this collaboration started back in 2017 with the aim of promoting import substitution and export of fruits and vegetables. This, he says requires reliable production year round and disease resistant varieties.

Under this program the Ministry of Agriculture will receive some office equipment and completion of greenhouses at the Sigatoka and Seaqaqa Research Stations.

“We will produce tissue cultured planting materials and make it available for farmers through the two greenhouses that are being constructed at the Sigatoka and Seaqaqa Research Stations,” said Dr Macanawai.

CePaCT has so far provided the Ministry of Agriculture with around 2700 tissue cultured plants of banana and sweet potato varieties selected based on results of previous evaluations by the Ministry of Agriculture which were selected based on their high yields and nutritional characteristics.