Farmers in Ra encouraged to plant rice

Ra farmers have been encouraged to plant rice. Picture: FILE

RA farmers have been encouraged to plant rice as an alternative crop to assist Government in reducing its import bill.

The farmers were recently part of a rice field day this week in Saivou district where crops such as dalo and cassava were a staple crop.

Ministry of Agriculture senior research officer rice Penaia Mua said rice was also a staple food among Fijians and farmers could benefit from its sale if they planted the crop.

He said Government aimed to revitalise the rice industry through collaboration with development partners in an attempt to reduce imports.

“Fiji’s import bill on rice is approximately $40million dollars annually, hence the more reason to cultivate rice here in Ra as is currently being done in Dreketi in Vanua Levu,” he said.

“Government is revitalizing the rice industry and has worked with bilateral development partners like China to materialize this.”

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