By Bethanie Harriman – EM TV News, Lae
Papua New Guinean rice company, Trukai Industries, will buy rice from local farmers in the Oro Province.
Sombere Village, in the Sohe District of Oro, is set to ship its rice to Lae for Trukai to process and supply to a dedicated consumer market.
Trukai Chairman, Mark Robertson, said the company wants to help PNG farmers grow rice.
“People of PNG have a national rice policy and we want to be part of that policy, by growing rice in PNG, with the people of PNG,” says Robertson.
Trukai will purchase rice from local rice farmers.
“The rice can grow in drought, we have been hit with a dry spell for four months, but the rice survived,” said Oro Rice Growers Association Chairman, Hendricks Saese.
The 500 farmers in the co-operative are going commercial by primarily growing the resilient rice grain native to Taiwan.
Since 1990, Papua New Guinea has imported over 150,000 tones of rice. and if local famers continue to do well, the country can become an exporter of rice.
It follows similar arrangements talked about in Morobe, West New Britain and other places where rice grows.
Farmers will sign a rice purchasing agreement with trukai and the provincial government in the next few days.
Trukai Industries Chairman, Mark Robertson inspected rice fields and harvests in Sombere Village with Laurie Arthur, Chairman of Trukai’s sister company Sun Rice, on the 24th of August.
Trukai’s Rice Development Manager, Humphrey Saese, will be working closely with the famers to make sure the locally grown rice meets requirements.