Eggplant research

NADI-based Nature’s Way Cooperative Ltd’s research and extension partnership committee is looking at the changing weather patterns and its effect on produce, particularly eggplant.

While speaking at an exporters symposium in Lautoka yesterday, CEO Michael Brown said because of climate change, eggplants were responding in a very queer manner.

“Because of some of the variables that exist in the field, when the eggplants get affected, people seem to have the impression that the machine treating the produce is not doing the right thing,” he said.

“We have looked at the machineries because there are sets of consignments coming in and being treated in the same chamber, in the same temperature under the same treatment regime and it turns out excellent.

“But then there are other consignments coming in by other growers and it may have varied variables and we need research to be done regarding this.

“Therefore, we have formed a taskforce together with the Biosecurity Authority of Fiji (BAF) and a lot of effort is being put into this.”

Mr Brown said the Research and Extension Partnership Committee, which included the Ministry of Agriculture, BAF, the Taiwan Technical Mission, farmers and exporters representatives and other stakeholders such as Secretariat of the Pacific Community, were also looking after papaya, mangoes and breadfruit.

“The committee looks at issues like diseases or whatever problems that confront these produce and try to find some sort of solution.”

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