Local farmers harvest bok choy (Chinse cabbage) in Rarotonga. Picture: Ministry of Agriculture/19111710
Ministry of Agriculture says they are in a good position to continue to actively support farmers this year in a number of areas.
of Agriculture Temarama Anguna-Kamana said through the financial support of the
government, including regional and global partners they are able to support
farmers in areas of fruit and vegetable seedling supplies, farm input supplies
and the provision of technical advice to farming community at all levels.
ministry will actively support the Pa Enua with their crop production programs
and marketing of fresh produce,” she said.
said the ministry has a regular programme to assist farmers with the supply of
ready-to-plant fruit and vegetables seedlings from their nurseries to both
commercial farmers and home gardeners.
during the last six months, the ministry distributed more than 158,000
vegetable seedlings of 18 different vegetables (tomatoes, cucumbers, capsicum,
Chinese cabbage, cabbage, watermelon, corn, lettuce to name a few) to over 40
commercial full and part-time farmers.
seedlings were also distributed to home gardeners.
ministry also supported farmers through the supply of fruit tree seedlings to
both commercial and home gardeners.
“The ministry will continue to provide such
support to commercial farmers and home gardeners throughout 2021 and beyond,
including the supply of vegetable seeds, fertilisers and selected farm inputs
to assist the farming community of Rarotonga and the Pa Enua.”
with other suppliers, the ministry continues to promote the use of organic and
low toxicity pesticides for insect management.
would continue to advocate to farmers the importance of sustainable farming and
sustainable soil management practices through preventing the removal of
vegetation or soil cover, composting, use of green manure crops and maintaining
grass strips to prevent soil loss during periods of heavy rain.
a crucial first step towards improving our crop production by having more
healthy soils and to assist farmers better adapt to changing climatic
conditions. Such practices help with reducing the need to use certain
pesticides and in-organic fertilizers for crop management through the
improvement of soil health, whilst at the same time, increasing the water
holding capacity,” Anguna-Kamana said.
UN General Assembly choosing 2021, as the International Year of Fruits and
Vegetables, Anguna-Kamana said this has much significance for the Cook Islands.
as we strive to address the rising incidences of non-communicable diseases in
our country through enhanced public-private sector collaboration.”
the ministry has and will continue to work closely with the Ministry of Health
and Ministry of Education to help with the promotion of fruits and vegetables
in the schools on Rarotonga and the Pa Enua through their school gardening and