Vanuatu and China discuss agriculture and fisheries sectors development

The Minister’s delegation, which comprises his wife, Director of the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (DARD) Antoine Ravo, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Vanuatu Agriculture College (VAC) Peter Napwatt, First Secretary of the Embassy of Vanuatu in Beijing Osborne Taseru, First Political Advisor (PA) David Gibson, and Minister’s Private Secretary Vincent Kapalu arrived in Nanjing, Jiangsu Province, on Tuesday.

The Director of Fisheries did not join the delegation due to in-country duties.

Sustainable farming key to ensuring food production after natural disasters in Vanuatu

“When we talk about sustainable farming system, we are referring to a farming system that we use that will help to ensure that there is high agricultural production, year after year,” Junior Salong, soil agronomist at the Vanuatu Department of Agriculture said.

ABC Radio Australia reports the system includes using crop rotation, alley cropping and contour cropping to help prevent soil erosion and landslides.

“These disasters always effect our farms but we have to put some practices in to help reduce the risk of these disasters damaging out crops,” Mr Salong said.

Traditional knowledge survey on agriculture conducted in Santo

The Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (DARD) said farmers from different islands have also been interviewed.

"10 farmers were interviewed to collect information related to traditional knowledge and agriculture.

"Important information collected is related to planting times, harvesting methods, storage methods, and pest and disease control methods".

Pacific agriculture and forestry leaders eye progress post COVID-19

The Government of Fiji hosted the Seventh Regional Meeting of the Pacific Heads of Agriculture and Forestry Services (PHOAFS), held virtually from 25 – 27 August with partners the Pacific Community (SPC), Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO) and the Fiji Ministries of Agriculture and Forestry.  

Vanuatu looks to agriculture to help diversify economy

The economy, which is mostly held up by tourism, has been ruined by the collapse of the visitor market since March because of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Our correspondent in Port Vila said 20 percent of the government's budget was being diverted to the Ministry of Agriculture to revive the country's once vibrant cooperatives.

The cash injection aimed to help the cooperatives trade their agricultural products throughout the country and overseas.

Vanuatu Agriculture Department assists communities affected by COVID-19

The main tasks under this agreement include pruning of shade trees and weeding of DARD’s banana and kava multiplication plots and planting of island cabbage on the multiplication plots of Tagabe Agriculture farm.

The multiplication plot was established for the collection, maintenance and generation of planting materials of DARD selected crops.

The Director for DARD, Antoine Ravo, said, “DARD intends to provide support to communities affected by the COVID-19 situation and especially those who seek financial support.

Vanuatu agriculture to receive VT1 billion as business feels COVID-19 impact

This was confirmed by the Economic Stabilisation Package team leader, Rex Willie.

He said this money will be removed from the Employment Stabilisation Package.

“If we have problems with imports of goods or jobs losses, we have agriculture to substitute,” said Willie.

At the recent opening of the Agriculture Show in Port Vila the Prime Minister announced 21% of next year’s national budget will be put into Ministry of Agriculture.

As Vanuatu government redirects it focus, other businesses in Vanuatu and around the region continue to suffer.

DARD signs agreement with VARTC for Research and Development of fruits and vegetables

The honor was given to the Acting Director General (DG) for the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Forestry, Fisheries and Biosecurity (MALFFB), William Naviti, to sign the agreement on behalf of DARD Director, and the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) for VARTC, Michel Lechapt.

“MALFFB Executive has agreed to involve the DG’s office to officiate the Public Private Partnership (PPP) agreement that DARD is implementing.

Director for DARD, Antoine Ravo said, “The agreement will assist VARTC in its research and development work focusing on fruits and vegetables.

Agriculture Regulations workshop planned for Santo

The main purpose of visiting the Assistant Agriculture Officers (AAO) in their areas, as scheduled in DARD’s 2020 Business Plan, is to find out their needs and challenges and how the forums have assisted them to address skills gaps and needs identified.

The first team is currently visiting Sanma Province.

A new Agriculture Act was passed in parliament in 2018 to provide for the management of the agriculture sector, especially with the commercial production.

The Act has mandated the Department of Agriculture to take lead on its implementation.

Vanuatu’s Shepherd Islands farmers encouraged to increase produce

SMAS was a very important event where participating farmers were observed and evaluated by technical officers from the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Forestry, Fisheries and Biosecurity (MALFFB) and the Ministry of Trade, Tourism, Industry and Cooperatives to measure the level of production of farmers and what the farmers should do in preparation for the next Shepherds Mini Agriculture Show.