SHARON E BARNABAS
VEGETABLE farmers will now benefit from a mobile market information service, thanks to Fresh Produce Development Agency (FPDA), Digicel and AusAID.
FPDA, in partnership with Digicel, launched its mobile market information networking system (MOMIS) project in Port Moresby yesterday.
The two-year project is being funded by AusAID at a cost of K433,740 under the agricultural research and development support facility (ARDSF).
The project is one of the recipients of many other small agriculture innovative projects under the agriculture innovative grant scheme (AIGS).
It aims to improve dissemination of market information to increase market access.
Information could be accessed through simple short message service (SMS) from Digicel phones to database that will be updated weekly by FPDA.
Service rate will be charged at normal commercial rate of K0.35 per text.
The idea is to provide weekly market information to ensure that there is a more realistic reaction to market forces by producers.
The market information service will include, price, quality and supply for 12 main crops sold in eight urban markets in the country where FPDA conducts weekly surveys.
This will assist farmers to make competent marketing decisions which would will in more stable and higher income to growers.