New kumala variety ideal for dry conditions

June 22, 2024 3:54 pm

[Source: Ministry of Agriculture and Waterways Fiji/ Facebook]

The Ministry of Agriculture has released a new variety of kumala and published a Cassava Characteristic Booklet.

Minister Vatimi Rayalu says agriculture is the heartbeat of many Fijian communities.

He adds that as Fiji navigates the challenges of the impacts of climate change, soil degradation and increasing agro-input costs, it is important to introduce resilient crop varieties.

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“Our new crop variety is a testament to our proactive approach to mitigating these challenges. I am pleased to present to you the new sweet potato variety and announce its name, Vanuavatu. This name has been thoughtfully chosen to embody the resilience, strength and promise inherent in this new variety.”

Rayalu adds the Vanuavatu variety can tolerate dry weather conditions and will be good for farmers in the Western and Northern Divisions.

This is the 13th kumala variety launched by the Ministry of Agriculture.

Meanwhile, the Minister says that the Cassava Characteristic Booklet has been produced to assist farmers, students, extension officers and the industry to correctly identify the different cassava varieties.

It will serve as crucial information, empowering users to make informed decisions and safeguarding the future of cassava production. Researchers too will benefit greatly from this booklet in their future breeding activities.

Rayalu says the Ministry is taking steps to enhance agricultural productivity, and ensuring food security which will improve the livelihoods and knowledge of the farmers.