Lae’s sun is unforgiving but money has to be made from buai bags from as far as the East Sepik Province.
Bumbu market is one of the bustling trade centres; and the negotiating that takes place among vendors is very intense.
The money being made is astonishing, on average, people make over K10,000 per day.
But what is locally dubbed as the ‘green gold’, has its trade prospects in jeopardy. Diseases have affected betel nut trees in some parts of the Madang and Morobe Province.
If the disease-causing source is not managed well by authorities it could put an end to the lucrative trade.
Coastal people have depended on buai for income for many years. They know that if the trees were to stop producing, they will suffer.