K22mil cocoa windfall for Morobe


FARMERS in Morobe made about K22 million from the sale of 83,000 bags or 5000 tonnes of cocoa last year, an official says.
Anthon Ningi, the PNG Cocoa Board manager for Morobe revealed this during the launching of the Productive Partnership in Agriculture Programme in Mutzing, Markham.
The programme is funded by the World Bank to assist smallholder coffee and cocoa farmers improve their yields.
Ningi said 37 per cent (K5 million) of the production sale was from farmers in Markham district. Huon Gulf was second with 35 per cent of the production revenue, followed by Tewai-Siassi with 15 per cent, Finschhafen on eight per cent, Nawaeb four per cent and Lae on one per cent.
He said the total production of cocoa in the province from 2008 to 2016 was 9359 tonnes which generated about K50 million (with the price ranging from K290 and K400 per tonne). Farmers in the three local level governments of Markham (Umi-Atzera, Ongga-Waffa and Leron-Wantoat) have sold more than 27,000 bags of cocoa (1700 metric tonnes) and made about K5 million last year.
“Cocoa in a lucrative industry in the world with 44 countries producing and exporting cocoa,” he said.
“PNG supply just under one percent of cocoa to the world market. What we need is consistency in the industry and an increase in the volume of production.
“From 2014 to 2016, the cocoa industry in Morobe has seen significant changes.”