BY SAMIE WAIKORI
MALAITA provincial government has acknowledged the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and External Trade and donor partners for the initiative to establish a taro project on Malaita province.
Premier Daniel Suidani made the statement during a ground breaking ceremony to begin work on a taro pack house program at the Fiu/Adaliua.
He said the project came in line with government policy in trying to invest more in economic activity and the productive sectors, and this project is one of them.
“This more or less rules out that direction on the government policy to support the rural areas and increase more farmers to plant commercially.
“It must be noted that without continual growth and progress such words as improvement, achievement and success have no meaning.
“This has been a long and tedious process where the project has started with a vision to engage more in economic activity in the productive sector.
“Therefore, this project in years from today will remain special and remain the envy of many other taro farmers within the province.
“The pack house will be constructed in preparation and anticipation of the increase number of taro farmers in the future to contribute to the trading of the product locally and internationally,” Suidani said.
He said taro is not new as forefathers of the province were involved in their farming years back.
“Therefore as a traditional root crop, I encourage all farmers in Malaita to involve in the farming to supply and support the taro pack house.
“Although the taro pack house is the beginning in the taro industry, we should focus more on improving on other avenues with regards to taro farming.
“I urged the government and those responsible to find other alternative funding innovative programs that may boost the industry.
“This is a challenge that we must encounter in order to achieve our aim in commercial farming of the product to meet the existing demand,” Suidani said.
He said the taro pack house is more than an infrastructure as it looks at it in a broader context.
Suidani said it is an important part of greater efforts to connect local farmers through strategic infrastructure investment and major steps in stimulating economic development in the province.
“This is an all-inclusive provincial project, a project that MARA government would be proud of, knowing their vision and dreams live on.
“This will bring the province a step closer to fulfilling its economic development,” he said.
Suidani said the completion of the project will not only see its limitation to taro but other agriculture products as well.