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Strategies For Enhancing Productivity And Income Of Coconut Farmers In Fiji

The paper highlights that coconut is the base crop for over 50,000 rural people particularly those in the Northern part of the archipelago. Being second most important crop next to sugar, the coconut industry continues to face decline in copra production and expects further decrease in 2004 due to cyclone in 2003. The decline is attributed to coconut oil price fluctuations, other available oil sources and senility of trees, thus, discouraging growers from producing copra The Coconut Industry Development Authority (CIDA) aims to replant 16,500 ha, and rehabilitate 25,000 ha of coconut trees. Coconut oil remains Fiji’s main coconut product for export with main exporters being Copra Millers of Fiji Ltd., and Ocean Soaps Ltd. Other products include coconut skin care products, canned coconut cream and coconut timber based furniture products. The paper stressed the need for external funding for Research and Development work in areas of value addition, Market diversification and transfer of technology.

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