FIFTEEN farmers are closely working with the marketing unit, agriculture planning division of the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock (MALS) to export their local produce overseas.
Chief field officer Noel Roposi said, MALS had linked fifteen farmers with overseas interested buyers to kick off trading.
“Since MAL put out this privilege, many farmers approached us and about fifteen farmers have already been linked with interested buyers.
“The farmers are excited about the new initiative and praised it. This is one way direct market can be secured for farmers.
Some of the countries and products they are prepared to take include
– Australia: Dried chilli, dry coconut and green (fresh) coconut;
– New Zealand: Fresh pineapple fruits, frozen slippery cabbage, Robusta and Arabica coffee;
– Canada: Frozen cassava;
– Vanuatu: Kava, copra, timber, artefacts, coconut oil, rattan chairs, noni fruit, frozen reef fish, snapper fish, king fish, lobster tail, sea shells and mud crab;
– Fiji: Sundried kava, frozen reef fish, timber, tuna, fresh pineapple fruit, green coconut, sun dried cocoa beans.
Mr Roposo said it is important that local farmers, small and medium businesses and private entrepreneurs take advantage of the opportunity and meet the demand for a conducive market trading.
“Our trade with other countries have been negative and one-sided because we import more, so it’s important for the country to utilise this opportunity to boost our trade.
For more information about the initiative, contact the Chief Field Officer (Marketing), Marketing Unit, Agriculture Planning Division, Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock on Tel: (677) 22143 ext 215; Mobile: (677) 7402370.
By DENVER NEWTER