NEWS

PM: Smart Nursery, A Win For Food Security

“Apart from providing seedlings for rehabilitation programmes after natural disasters, this nursery will also work to harden tissue-culture planting materials for mass propagation.
14 Apr 2022 13:40
PM: Smart Nursery, A Win For Food Security
From left Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama, Head of Agriculture Research Shalendra Prasad, Minister for Agriculture Mahendra Reddy and High Commissioner of Canada to Fiji, Joanne Lemay during the nursery opening at Koronivia Research Station on April 13, 2022. Photo: Ronald Kumar

A smart nursery to ensure long term food security in Fiji was commissioned by the Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama yesterday.

The nursery, which can not be disrupted by climate change or extreme weather conditions, is a state-of-the-art facility set up at a cost of more than $330,000.

It is based at the Ministry of Agriculture Research Station in Koronivia and was funded by the Canadian Government through its fund for local initiatives.

Mr Bainimarama said Fiji was faced with a huge challenge in the form of cyclones and other climate-driven events.

He said severe weather events could wipe out entire harvests threatening the livelihoods of farmers, driving up the price of food in the market, and hurting the economy.

“This nursery is a vital part of our long-term effort to ensure that Fiji has a food supply that cannot be unduly disrupted by climate change and extreme weather events, like the 14 cyclones that have struck us since 2016,” he said

“Apart from providing seedlings for rehabilitation programmes after natural disasters, this nursery will also work to harden tissue-culture planting materials for mass propagation.

“This nursery will provide millions of seeds that have been developed through careful research. Those seeds will grow into healthy crops.

“And those crops will ensure that we Fijians can find nutritious produce in our markets at affordable prices. Today is a win for food security in Fiji.”

He added that the Fiji Bureau of Statistics had recently reported that the agriculture sector contributed more than $756million to Fiji’s Gross Domestic Product and has grown at an average rate of 7.1 per cent annually in the past decade.

High Commissioner of Canada to Fiji, Joanne Lemay, in her official remarks said the Canadian Government was happy to assist Fiji in ensuring food security and the empowerment of women in the farming sector..

 



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