Tuesday, April 19, 2011
Coffee industry welcomes World Bank project
By MALUM NALU
Coffee industry representatives have welcomed the World Bank-funded Productive Partnership in Agriculture Project (PPAP), saying that it is long overdue and just what the industry needs.
Exporters’ chairman John Edwards, processors’ chairman Jerry Kapka, plantation representative Max Kumbamong, Western Highlands’ smallgrowers’ chairman Peter Kewa and Jiwaka smallgrowers’ chairman James Koimo were united at the launch of the coffee segment in Goroka on Tuesday last week.
“Our coffee industry is slowing down,” Edwards said.
“The PPAP is giving us another chance.”
Kapka, managing director of renowned Kongo Coffee, said a lot of money was going to be pumped into the industry.
“By the time this project is finished, we want to see coffee earn K2 to K3 billion a year,” he said.
“We want credible people to be involved in this project.”
Kumbamong said the government had failed the industry many times, such as the ill-fated national agriculture development plan (NADP), in which millions were alleged to have been stolen by “paper farmers”.
“This is a great opportunity for Papua New Guineans to benefit,” he said.
“Such plans are long overdue.”
Kewa said smallholder growers were facing many problems.
“Prices are not going down to the farmers,” he said.
“We need farmer training.
“We need group marketing.
“This is where World Bank can come in.
“We have to work together and make this industry develop.”
Koimo said the soon-to-be Jiwaka province had set itself an ambitious target of one million bags per year.
“We have set a target of one million bags per year,” he said.
“Jiwaka produce 40% of PNG coffee but is not receiving services.
“I think it’s best that CIC decentralises extension services to the provinces.
“It’s timely that the World Bank has come in and we want you to work with smallholder coffee growers.”