World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


International markets for Pacific products with SPC help

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

11th OCTOBER 2012

International markets for Pacific products with SPC help

Breadfruit chips from Samoa, coffee from Papua New Guinea, crystallised ginger from Fiji, squash from Tonga, cassava flour from Vanuatu, pandanus juice from Marshall Islands and cocoa from Solomon Islands — these are just some of the wide range of products that Pacific Island farmers and entrepreneurs are supplying to export markets, with assistance from the European Union-funded Facilitating Agricultural Commodity Trade (FACT) pilot project, which began in May 2008.

Implemented by an eight-member team based at SPC in Nabua, Fiji and Honiara, Solomon Islands, the FACT project is led by Agri-Forestry Export Specialist and FACT Project Team Leader Dr Lex Thomson.

Another member of the FACT team is Apiame Cegumalua, Export Processing Officer in the Land Resources Division of the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC). She explains, ‘The FACT pilot project arose out of the desire of Pacific governments to increase trade in agricultural and forestry products. This was seen as a way to help reduce trade deficits, assist in poverty reduction in rural areas and curb urban drift.

‘The FACT team is passionate about the work we undertake in the region to support farmers, rural dwellers, and small commercial operators to become export-oriented and market-driven, able to supply overseas markets consistently with competitive agricultural and forestry products. Part of FACT support includes assistance with ensuring that the produce meets international market requirements and Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP), and has good quality packaging and label designs,’ she added.

‘The team has worked extensively at the community and industry level, holding training workshops for process operators and building capacity for farmers and small business entrepreneurs. They are trained in food business management skills and techniques, food processing and food safety, as well as in ways to add value to their produce. Part of the process is to encourage farmers to draw on their own creativity in finding ways to reduce post harvest losses and utilise their produce once it has been harvested,’ she said.

Successful workshops have led to rural women and men producing and selling their home-made banana chips at Kosrae Airport in the Federated States of Micronesia, manioc flour in Palau, cured fish in Pohnpei and tuna jerky in Marshall Islands.

On a larger scale, thanks to FACT assistance, farmers from Tonga export fruit and vegetables to New Zealand; spices and essential oils from Papua New Guinea are exported to Fiji, Germany, Japan and the United Kingdom; and some of Fiji’s root crops, vegetables and ginger find their way to Australia, New Zealand, France and the United States of America.

‘In this way, the livelihoods of Pacific Islanders and small, private-sector exporters are being improved,’ said Ms Cegumalua.

Although the FACT pilot programme comes to an end later this year, its success can be measured by the fact that the European Union is funding a new trade project, also implemented by SPC. The Increasing Agriculture Commodity Trade (IACT) project is working with an initial 30 enterprises in 15 countries.
ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

UN Health Agency Responds To Ebola Spike

UN health agency responds to Ebola spike by deploying team on border of Guinea and Guinea-Bissau More>>

UN Casts Israel As World's Worst Violator Of Health Rights

Israel's army team of medics recently treated 1,600 victims of the Nepal earthquake. More>>

W Thousands Flee Syria’s Besieged Historic City Of Palmyra

As thousands flee Syria’s besieged historic city of Palmyra, UN refugee agency readies response plan More>>

UN Agency To Halt Housing Allowance For Palestine Refugees

Lack of funds forces UNRWA to suspend cash assistance for housing for Palestinian refugees from Syria in Lebanon. Photo: UNRWA/Shafiq Fahed More>>


Bangkok: International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia, Biphophia

BMA, UN, embassy representatives, civil society and artists stand united with LGBTI Thais on International Day against Transphobia, Homophobia, and Biphobia (IDAHOT) at Bangkok Art and Culture Centre More>>

Displaced Iraqis Face Difficulties As Fighting Continues

UNHCR is concerned about the processing arrangements in place at the Bzabz bridge – a series of pontoons across the Euphrates River which marks the boundary between Anbar province and the capital, Baghdad. Photo: UNHCR/G. Ohara More>>

UNESCO Chief Condemns Killing Of Bangladeshi Blogger

Director-General of the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), Irina Bokova. UN Photo/Devra Berkowitz The head of the United Nations agency with a mandate to defend freedom of expression and press freedom worldwide today voiced ... More>>

Philadelphia: Train Crash

Five people have been confirmed dead and more than 136 people injured after an Amtrak train crashed in Philadelphia today at 9.20pm local time.More>>

UN News: Alarming Surge In Bay Of Bengal Crossings

The number of irregular migrants crossing the Bay of Bengal has almost doubled over the past year amid a dangerous uptick in human smuggling and trafficking across the region, according to a new report from the United Nations refugee agency. More>>

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
World
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news