CHINA EYES MUSHROOM FARMING IN FIJI

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Agriculture experts say Fiji weather ideal

SUVA, Fiji (Fiji Times, Jan. 28, 2010) - A team from China is in the country to conduct a feasibility study on mushroom production.

The team from Fujian Agriculture and Forestry University met Joketani Cokanasiga, who holds the Primary Industries portfolio and other senior management to express their view for commercial production of mushroom in Fiji.

The team would study the production and benefits of mushroom business in Fiji. The mushroom technology which originated from this Fujian University has spread to 31 provinces in China.

According to Professor Linping Wang, they have a chain of 1,100 foreign experts working on this technology which could benefit Fiji in terms of poverty alleviation, employment opportunities, food security and environment protection.

"Simplified demonstration models have been set up in countries such as Africa and Papua New Guinea and farmers find it easy to adopt which brings in quick flow of income," Ms. Wang said.

She said Fiji had a suitable climate and ideal temperature and humidity for mushroom farming so if we planted one hectare of grass we can get 500 tons of grass which can be used to grow 150 tons of fresh mushroom.

Ms Wang said 46 different grass species can be utilized to grow 55 different mushroom species and majority of them can be grown in Fiji.

"The purpose of this study is to identify which species can grow successfully in Fiji," she said.

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