DOREEN POLOH WAIM
A NEWLY-established Morobe Taro Marketing Cooperative Society Limited in Lae is currently in the process of securing markets to sell taros on a large scale.
The society was initiated by the Morobe Women’s Taro Project and the provincial agriculture division in June to assist farmers earn sufficient income; improve their living standards, and their nutrition.
It has more than 30,000 members from the nine districts.
Rice project officer Margaret Titus from the agriculture division said the Lae main market would be the collection point for the society to buy the taros from the farmers.
She said the society would be then sell the taros to extensive markets in the country.
Regional economic and planning adviser from the Department of Agriculture and Livestock Nelson Bomo said potential large scale markets they were looking at were mining sites and local markets in other provinces.
Mr Bomo said Morobe taros were more preferred by many because of their quality taste.
He said the current demand for taros in the mining areas was one tonne a month and for the Port Moresby markets was 10 tonnes a month.
The society was currently supplying samples to potential clients to sample, Mr Bomo said.
Mr Bomo said one setback they needed to improve on was to obtain funding for tools and pesticides to enable farmers produce quality taros and maintain constant supply to the markets.