Rehabilitation of rundown plantations

The Coffee Industry Corporation (CIC) for the first time will be facilitating the rehabilitation of rundown blocks and plantations using the innovative cost effective modalities.

CIC Chief Executive Officer Charles Dambui announced this on July 2nd at the CIC headquarters in Goroka when signing an agreement between two lead partners under the World Bank funded project – Coffee Industry Corporation Productive Partnerships in Agriculture Projects (CIC-PPAP).

“The agreement signing signifies the start of a household survey to be carried out by the lead partners to identify the number of households and the inputs to rehabilitate coffee blocks and plantations,” Dambui said.

The two lead partners are Jacob Taru of Agro Dev Trade Limited based in Kondopina, Dei Council, Western Highlands Province, and Nathan Gomae of Ipalgu and Gomena plantations, Goroka in Eastern Highlands Province.

Taru is currently working with 605 blockholders in the Dei Council area and parts of Jiwaka Province in reviving 20-30 hectares of rundown blocks that are subdivided into a manageable 4-5hectare blocks.

Gomae owns 90 hectares of rundown plantations in Goroka.

CIC-PPAP Manager Potaisa Hombunaka reaffirmed that the modality carried out by the PPAP (coffee component) can be seen as a cost-effective method as it ensures that ownership of the rehabilitation exercise is given back to the landowners.

“Under this agreement, CIC would only provide inputs, which are training, rehabilitation tools and equipment and materials inclusive of establishment of nurseries whereas the cost of labour and security would be given back to the owners of the blocks and plantations by way of subdividing their blocks and plantations and on consensual agreements, families are apportioned 4-5 hectares of coffee to manage.”

The harvested cherries are sold to the owner of the blocks and plantations who take care of the processing and marketing of the coffee.

He said CIC cannot encourage rehabilitation of blocks and plantations using the conventional method as it is no longer cost effective.

Hombunaka stated that under PPAP rehabilitation program, they have proven that it was possible to rehabilitate a hectare within the range of K2,500-K3,000.

“With the average price of K7,000 FOB per tonne, this model is worth the amount of input put towards the rehabilitation exercise.

“This modality is showing that we can effectively begin to rehabilitate blocks and plantations thus contributing towards the Government’s Medium Term Development Plan 3 (MTDP 3) of increasing coffee production.”

Dambui congratulated PPAP for coming up with the cost-effective model and said CIC would be taking it on board to integrate it in its programs under the Public Investment Program (PIP) funding of District-by-District rehabilitation.

A total of K25,000 has been put towards the household survey to commence in Western Highlands Province as the hectarage of coffee will be in excess of 400 hectares and K15,000 for Eastern Highlands Province.

Press release