Facilitating Agricultural Commodity Trade

The European Union-funded Facilitating Agricultural Commodity Trade (FACT) pilot project aims to support commercial ventures and producer groups in becoming export-oriented, market-driven enterprises that will consistently supply overseas markets with competitive agricultural and forestry products. The project is implemented by the Land Resources Division of the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC) in Suva, Fiji and started in May 2008.

FACT recognises contributions to developing agriculture and forestry exports
Tuesday, 21 September 2010 13:30

 

The Facilitating Agricultural Commodity Trade (EU-FACT) project of the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC) Land Resources Division has presented awards to five individuals in the Pacific for their outstanding contribution towards trade and value adding in agricultural and forestry products.

The EU-FACT project, which began in May 2008, is funded by the European Union under the 9th European Development Fund (EDF 9).

Ms Sharmayne Ryan from Amruqa (or Follywell No 6 Ltd), in Papua New Guinea (PNG), won the New Exporter Award. She accepted the award on behalf of all the company’s employees and the people of PNG.

‘I’m deeply honoured to be receiving this award and I would like to show my appreciation to SPC, particularly the FACT project, for presenting me with the Pacific’s New Exporter Award.

‘This award recognises the potential of the Pacific and its ability to take advantage of changing global market requirements to satisfy market demand and the wants of health- and socially-conscious shoppers,’ said the 24-year-old from East New Britain in PNG.

She won the award for her innovative work with the Komgi community and marketing and exporting cardamom oil and other commodities to New Zealand, Japan and Europe.

Ms Louise Rodan, winner of the Pacific Women in Agricultural Export Business award, was very emotional, dedicating her award to all women of Fiji.

‘These humble womenfolk in the rural areas work tirelessly to make a dollar or two to support their family,’ she said.

‘I have built my own skills from my mother’s expertise in product development,’ she continued.

Ms Rodan works for Balthan (Western) Ltd in its Suva office and is responsible for ensuring quality control and meeting overseas demand, and new product development such as blanched ota (fern).

Mr Gary Tarte, from Wainiyaku Estate in Taveuni (Northern Fiji) was the winner of the Pacific Farmer Award.

‘I come from the coconut industry, which was in a worn-out state for many years, and I have just started exploring opportunities for value adding utilising new technology.

‘The solution for farmers to make profit is by value adding and building up a customer base through direct sales and niche markets,’ Mr Tarte said.

Apart from producing virgin coconut oil, he raises his own cattle under coconut trees, owns a licensed slaughter house and sells retail meat through his own butchery. By products derived from the production of virgin coconut oil are used to generate an alternative supply of electricity, powering elements of their production chain.

Wainiyaku Estate is organically certified and is currently being assisted by the FACT project to become Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP) certified.

‘We believe organically certified production is the key opportunity emerging in developed economies, and at Wainiyaku we have seized this niche market.’

Mr Tarte, a hardworking farmer with an admirable vision to revitalise Fiji’s coconut industry via value adding (virgin coconut oil), is an example to others.

The other two EU-FACT export winners from Solomon Islands will be presented with their awards in November. Each winner received a certificate and EUR 500 for being recognized as the best Pacific exporter contributor nominated in their category.

The awards are designed to recognise outstanding achievers for their creativity and hard work in the region and provided an ideal way to support and promote those involved in agriculture and forestry.

The five award categories and their respective winners were:

  • SPC EU FACT New Exporter Award – a Pacific person selected for developing an outstanding new agricultural export business or new product/market –Ms Sharmayne Ryan (PNG).

 

  • SPC EU FACT Women in Agricultural Export Business Award – a Pacific woman recognised for her contribution to agricultural or agroforestry exports from the Pacific Islands – Ms Louise Rodan (Fiji Islands).

 

  • SPC EU FACT Pacific Farmer Award – a Pacific person selected for consistently supplying high-quality produce for export – Mr Gary Tarte (Fiji Islands).

 

  • SPC EU FACT Value-added Timber Exporter Award – a Pacific person selected for his/her efforts to develop new value-added timber products for export – Mr Holland Siloko (Solomon Islands).

 

  • SPC EU FACT Agroforestry Exporter Award – a Pacific person selected for his/her efforts to develop agroforestry plantings, systems and products for export – Mr Jasper Maike Bonie (Solomon Islands).

 

The FACT pilot project aims to assist selected commercial ventures and producer groups in export-oriented, market-driven enterprises that will consistently supply overseas markets with competitive agricultural and forestry products.

FACT’s activities are governed by a technical advisory group comprising five experts from the private sector, the University of the South Pacific, and the Pacific Islands Trade and Investment Commission.

FACT complements efforts aimed at enhancing regional cooperation and integration. This includes the policy commitment of the European Union under the Cotonou Agreement to facilitate the integration of Pacific members of the African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States (ACP) into regional and global economies.

(For further information please contact Vinesh Prasad on telephone (679)3370733 or email LRD Help Desk on email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .)

 


The European Union-funded Facilitating Agricultural Commodity Trade (FACT) project is implemented by the Land Resources Division of SPC.