Partnership to boost training for Western rice farmers

National

Farmers in Western will receive training in rice technologies, extension support and market access to sell home-grown rice through a partnership programme soon.
Farmers in the three regions of the Fly River basin will benefit through the partnership programme by Trukai Industries Limited and Ok Tedi Development Foundation (OKDF).
“Trukai is happy to assist OKTDF and the communities along the Fly River in terms of providing the necessary skills, technology and support to grow rice,” Trukai’s  rice development manager Humphrey Saese said.
He was in Western to roll out the first training for lead farmers and provide advice to the OKDF team as part of the partnership.
Officers from Trukai’s agriculture division visited three major locations where they assisted farmers with rice farming equipment such as power tillers, seeders, rice seeds and fertilisers to establish pilot crops of 2ha each.
Saese said Trukai would continue to provide technical support to growers in partnership with OKDF to ensure that communities became self-sufficient in rice production.
“The company is prepared to look at long-term options of sourcing local rice from these communities should farmers grow more rice, ” he said.
OKDF is confident the partnership with Trukai will eventually establish rice as a staple crop which can be grown and traded locally among communities.
Under its community mining closure agreement strategic plan, OKDF has identified rice amongst other commodities for cultivation along the Fly River basin.

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