Agriculture project at final stage: Firm

The National,Wednesday June 22nd, 2016

THE K23 million agriculture project in Surinki, Enga is on its final stage of design and planning, according to the Innovative Agro Industry.
Company chairman and director Ilan Weiss (pictured) told The National yesterday that the site works were expected to start immediately upon the advice of the Enga provincial government that all land issues had been cleared.
He said Enga Governor Sir Peter Ipatas, with the support of the Government, contributed K6 million as its investment in the project.
“IAI matched that investment kina for kina. Additional funding is expected to be followed up shortly,” Weiss said.
He said the project would engage out-growers and provide them with training, inputs including family irrigation systems, fertilisers and seeds.
Weiss said in the first stage, around 300 out-growers were expected to produce about 1100 metric tonns of potatoes, onions, carrots, strawberries and additional produce.
“The project further includes a nucleus farm that will grow its own produce, purchase the produce from the farmers at a fair price, sorting, storage and cooling facilities, logistics, including transport, hence making the Papua New Guinea domestic urban markets accessible to the local out growers and transforming subsistence agriculture into cash cropping farming,” Weiss said.
He said the project would later tap into export markets.
“The project will employ 100 employees in the construction phase and will further create full time and casual job opportunities in the operational phase,” he said.