COMMODITIES Export Marking Authority (CEMA) will be working closely with the local farmers to obtain the best quality cocoa and coconut products as part of encouraging downstream processing.
CEMA Chief Produce Inspector Patterson Siliota highlighted this during the closing of the World Food Day celebration yesterday in Honiara.
At the event CEMA demonstrated the process of extracting best quality product from cocoa and coconut.
From these quality cocoa and copra products a number of by-products can be produced for sales and export.
According to Mr Siliota a good number of coconut and cocoa farmers in the rural areas benefit almost every week from producing cocoa and copra.
Therefore CEMA tries to encourage downstream processing in the country where the final products are sold or exported to bring in more revenue to the country.
At the celebration in Townground this week CEMA also put on display proper drier which cocoa and copra farmers can use to cook cocoa and copra to avoid smoke.
Mr Siliota stated that CEMA has already fulfilled some of its dream to construct a factory.
One of the fine examples of a coconut down processing company is the Pacific Kokonut Oil which is now producing virgin oil, soaps, perfumes and other products.
He said such investment has provided employment for the locals.
“The more we build factories, more local farmers will gain profit from their products,” he said.
He said CEMA is in negotiation with a company to produce chocolate in the country using the best quality cocoa beans.
A laboratory test has been conducted to find a good quality chocolate, he said.
Mr Siliota said CEMA will work closely with the local farmers by conducting awareness and providing information to them so that they can produce high quality cocoa and copra.
It also aims to provide technical and business to the rural farmers.
BY MARY IDU BURUMAEA