Trukai eyes large-scale production

National

PAPUA New Guinea is in the early stage of developing the rice industry and needs to do more to get the industry moving, Trukai chief executive Greg Worthington-Eyre says.
Worthington-Eyre, whose company has been in the rice business in the country for more than three decades, said it would take some time.
But he said with the support and participation from stakeholders, rice could be grown on a big scale for commercial purposes.
The company recently bought a rice-milling machine from Vietnam for K620,000 to process locally-grown rice.
The Government announced three weeks ago that it was planning to reduce the import of rice to retain foreign currency in PNG. The country spends on average between K500 million to K600 million on rice imports a year.
“I think PNG is in its early stages of rice development,” Worthington-Eyre said.
“We can get the people engaged and the Government support to do it on a larger scale. If you ask the people to do it themselves, they won’t.
“If you ask the companies to do it themselves, they won’t too. So you have to create that synergy.”
He said at the Chingwam Rice Farm in Rangiampum in the Markham Valley, Morobe, a business model had been created to assist rice farmers produce rice and sell to Trukai where the market was guaranteed for them.

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