Sunday, May 30, 2010

Cocoa production increases at Vudal

By UNRE Public Relations


Cocoa production at the University of Natural Resources and Environment’s Vudal campus farm has begun to pick up.

This has been through the tireless efforts of cocoa unit supervisor Michael Humbuku and his men.

Since the invasion of cocoa pod borer (CPB) in East New Britain in 2006, the cocoa unit has been working hard to combat the pest using manual control.

This is because chemicals are expensive.

According to Mr Humbuku, cocoa was a good revenue source for the university.

He said before CPB hit the province, the farm produced more than 20 bags of dry beans every month.

More than K40, 000 was lost when the plant disease spread through the university’s cocoa plantations four years ago; however, Mr Humbuku said his unit did not give up.

They cut down all the cocoa trees and replanted new ones with proper management.

Cocoa seedlings that were planted in July 2007 in blocks 19 and 20 are being harvested this month.

The seedlings planted last year will be harvested next year.

Mr Humbuku said so far a total of six bags of wet beans had been harvested this month and production was expected to increase in the coming months.

The unit has planted a total of 14 hectares of cocoa seedlings with 31 hectares more to go.

The cocoa unit uses a simple technique to control CPB, which can assist local farmers greatly.

Mr Humbuku said its management skill did not require money, only labour and commitment.

Local farmers can get more information from Mr Humbuku at the university farm.


No comments:

Post a Comment