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Positive Growth In Fiji’s Pig Industry

Fiji’s pig industry has proven to be resilient showing positive growth in recent years capturing 80 per cent of the country’s pork market and ensuring food security. While its main
08 Oct 2018 13:02
Positive Growth In Fiji’s Pig Industry
Fiji Pig Farmers Association representative Filimoni Kilawekana

Fiji’s pig industry has proven to be resilient showing positive growth in recent years capturing 80 per cent of the country’s pork market and ensuring food security.

While its main income is from bacon, primarily from the tourism industry, it also supplies the fresh meat market trade and benefits from the traditional use of pork in local functions.

While presenting on behalf of the Fiji Pig Farmers Association during the returned seasonal workers workshop in Labasa on Friday, facilitator Filimoni Kilawekana said with pork now cheaper than imported lamb, there should be an opportunity to grow the industry.

Mr Kilawekana said to achieve this success the industry has invested in excess of $16 million with the bulk provided by its 16 association members, the largest producers of pork products in the country.

“The 16 members have been the foundation of the Association but we see a major opportunity for growth with the launching of the Fiji Crop and Livestock Council (FCLC),” he said.

“While these are the largest producers of pig products in the country we also recognise the contribution made by the large number of smaller farmers scattered throughout Fiji that supply their own niche markets.”

He said that the association has been working closely with the Ministry of Agriculture to continue to reach out to the pig farmers, scattered around the country.

“We are aware that these village pig farmers may never be able to expand to a large operation but we often assist them with feed, advice and the supply of genetically improved breeding stock to help them maintain and grow their business,” he said.

Mr Kilawekana said that a strong association can be of major benefit to its members and he used the Pig Association as an example of its worth.

“For instance we have been quite active this year working with Government vets to resolve issues on the importation storage and use of medicines, working with the Commerce Commission on its intervention into the livestock feed industry and recently explaining to the to the relevant authorities the threat of cheap, subsidised imports of bacon, that could endanger the industry.

“But, what will ultimately be of importance is the success of FCLC, for with all of the agriculture sector working together, and that is the purpose of the council.

“We can make major strides in ensuring food security in the country, increased exports, and a better living for our farmers.”

Feedback:  nacanieli.tuilevuka@fijisun.com.fj

 

 

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