Nari restores hope for community as they grow potatoes

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THE people of the mountainous Kabwum district of Morobe will once again start growing their much-loved potatoes.
The district recently signed a deal with the National Agriculture Research Institute (Nari) to have four pest-resistant varieties of potatoes trialed out in the district.
Last Thursday, seven bags of potatoes were flown from Nadzab Airport to Kabwum Station after being transported down from the Highlands.
Jonah Anthon, an associate research officer with the Nari Tambul research station in Western Highlands, said the Kabwum district development authority (DDA) had paid for the potatoes to be trialed in Kabwum.
Kabwum, a high-altitude district located at the foot of the Sarawaget Range north of Morobe, has been growing one variety of potatoes but the potato blight disease in 2003 destroyed the potatoes.
“The disease affected all the potatoes,” Anthon said.
“The Kabwum MP and DDA have, however, funded the rehabilitation of potato in the district.
“We have brought four pest-resistant varieties of potatoes that will be trialed in the district.”

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