Community focuses on cultivating rice

Business

By ROSELYN ELLISON
RICE farming will now be the focus at Eden Sanctuary in Tobera plantation in Kokopo-Vunamami Urban local level government (LLG) of Kokopo, East New Britain.
According to farmer Jeffrey Dickson, a total of two kilogrammes of rice seedlings had already been transplanted onto a 12×8 square-metre plot.
Dickson, an expert in rice farming, said rice was a staple food these days and that was why Eden Sanctuary was involving locals in rice farming.
“We are encouraging farmers to at least include rice farming into their backyard gardening besides planting other common food crops,” he said.
“Many other countries are saying Papua New Guineans cannot grow rice.
“This is not true.
“We can always grow our own rice.”
Dickson explained that rice seedlings were kept in the nursery for 14 days before being transferred to the prepared land for transplanting.
He said it would take eight to nine weeks before the rice was ready for harvest. Meanwhile, Eden Sanctuary owner Herman Valvalu said he was keen to see rice farming and other integrated agricultural projects do well.
His main aim was to help farmers by giving them training on how they could grow their own rice instead of buying from the shops.
Valvalu thanked Dickson for giving training on rice cultivation and harvesting.
He thanked the provincial agriculture and livestock division in Kokopo for its support.

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