Coffee berry borer update

A budget of K5 million has been allocated in the 2018 budget to continue to contain the spread of the coffee berry borer (CBB), with continuous assistance to come from the Coffee Industry Corporation (CIC) and NAQIA.

Agriculture Minister Benny Allan said he was pleased with the efforts so far in containing the pest from spreading outside the Eastern Highlands and Jiwaka provinces.

K10 million has been spent on the exercise since it was detected last year in Jiwaka, Asaro, Goroka and Unggai-Bena in the Eastern Highlands province. They remained contained in these areas.

Two roadblocks have been set up and remain at the border of Chimbu and Jiwaka and Eastern Highlands province, to stop the spread of CBB. 

And Allan is pleased with the efforts put by CIC and NAQIA, which has resulted in coffee berry borer not spreading to Western Highlands, Chimbu and Morobe.

The challenge however, remains in trying to get chemicals from overseas to spray affected trees due to the current foreign exchange rates.

“The banks cannot give us enough foreign exchange to import the chemicals from overseas. At the moment, only Farmset is providing chemicals,” stated Allan.

“CIC has arranged with a company from Japan – MG Corporation. That company has decided to supply chemicals without any payment and payment can be sorted out at a later time when the situation improves.”

At the moment, affected trees are also being cut down to contain the spread of CBB.

Sally Pokiton