CIC to boost coffee sector

Business, Main Stories

THE Coffee Industry Corp (CIC) is seeking to produce more than one million bags of coffee by 2013, and possibly increase that to two million bags by 2018 through massive rehabilitation of production gardens and funding assistance.
This was disclosed in Goroka recently by CIC chief executive officer Navi Anis in a briefing on the moribund state of the industry for acting Agriculture Minister Andrew Kumbakor.
Mr Anis said the country’s coffee export for the last 10 years has remained stagnant at one million bags a year, earning only an average of K450 million.
He said since the creation of CIC in 1991 up to the present, coffee production has stagnated at around one million bags a year.
“The only record export of 1.3 million bags was reached in 1998 and 999, with the average production of 1.05 million bags.
Mr Anis recalled the 1.3 million bags produced in 1998-99 was spurred by a massive rehabilitation of village coffee gardens and blocks that were under threat from coffee rust outbreaks.
He said CIC is re-visiting the Coffee Development Agency (CDA) era by adopting the district by district small village coffee rehabilitation patrol scheme.
The aim to conduct patrol in one district at a time is subject to funding under the National Agriculture Development Plan (NADP), Mr Anis said.
The scheme was started last year with a K3.9 million funding under NADP in Anglimp, South Waghi district, Western Highlands;  Kundiawa-Gembogl district, Simbu; and Obura-Wonenara district, Eastern Highlands.
The funding was exclusively for the rehabilitation of old gardens at a cost of K3 million and a nursery for new planting materials at K800,000.