SUNBIZ

Machines For VCO Factory In Savusavu

Copra farmers in Vanua Levu will have a chance of supplying whole coconuts to Virgin Coconut Oil (VCO) factory where machines will carry out the entire required task. This was
20 Sep 2016 12:28
Machines For VCO Factory In Savusavu
Permanent Secretary of Agriculture Jitendra Singh officiated ground breaking ceremony of the Virgin Coconut Oil (VCO) factory at Copra Millers of Fiji Limited in Savusavu accompanied by various Government department heads. Photo:SHRATIKA NAIDU

Copra farmers in Vanua Levu will have a chance of supplying whole coconuts to Virgin Coconut Oil (VCO) factory where machines will carry out the entire required task.

This was the comment made by the Permanent Secretary of Agriculture Jitendra Singh during the ground breaking ceremony of VCO factory at Copra Millers of Fiji Limited (CMFL) complex in Savusavu last Friday.

“Farmers will have a choice of supplying whole coconuts to the factory where machines will carry out the tasks of de-husking, de-shelling, paring, grating, milking, VCO extraction, vacuum drying and packing as opposed to the current practice of collecting coconuts on farm, cutting copra, drying and then transporting to the copra mill,” Mr Singh said.

He also mentioned the Government had allocated funds for the purchase of this equipment.

“Government had allocated a further $500,000 for purchasing of virgin coconut oil equipment for small scale producers which would complement the export markets,” he said.

“Part of this fund is allocated for the freight and transportation costs and purchase of coconut seedlings in the National Coconut rehabilitation programme.”

Mr Singh added the project would have positive value chain effects on major coconut industry stakeholders like coconut farmers.

He said the factory would comply with Hazard Analysis Critical Control Points (HACCP) standards to ensure the production of premium quality VCO that meets market requirements.

The factory will also provide employment to nearby villages, especially women and youth with an additional ten staff recruited to work in the factory.

Copra Millers of Fiji Limited chairman Raj Sharma said the company invested more than $0.5 million in the factory and VCO machines.

“The factory would be ready by November this year,” Mr Sharma said.

“We have recruited a coconut specialist from India to head this VCO factory and for two local staff to be trained as part of the succession planning for our VCO team leader position over the next three years.”

Edited BY: KATHRIN KRISHNA

Feedback:  shratika.n@fijisun.com.fj

 


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