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New rice harvester to assist farmers in Qelewaqa

16 members of Qelewaqa Cooperative in the Macuata area will now be able to harvest rice in 2024 without challenges after receiving a rice harvester through government 1/3 and 2/3 assistance.

This has been highlighted by the president of the Qelewaqa Cooperative, Kaiyaz Khan, considering the 200 acres of rice fields that farmers have to harvest using traditional skills and methods.

“At times, when rice gets mature, we just go and look for a rice harvester to help with the harvesting. At times, we don’t get the rice harvesters on time. So what we members decided was that we purchase a rice harvester for us.”

Khan says that with the new harvester, it will enable the farmers to harvest rice on time and also assist other farmers in the area, for which they will be charged a reasonable charge to cover the fuel cost and the operator’s wages too.

Assistant Minister for Agriculture Tomasi Tunabuna has also highlighted the government’s plans for the rice industry in the coming years.

“We have a lot of competition in the market. When it comes to selling our rice, one thing we should understand is that if we don’t have a rice industry, we are going to import it all the time. So if we have a rice industry, we can grow our own rice. We will be relying on the importation of rice.”

The coalition government is also focusing on developing the agriculture sector in the Northern Division.

https://www.fbcnews.com.fj/news/new-rice-harvester-to-assist-farmers-in-qelewaqa/ QR Code

Published Date: December 29, 2023

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