A blog maintained by Tevita Kete, PGR Officer
Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC), Suva, Fiji Islands
This weblog documents the activities of Pacific Agricultural Genetic Resources Network (PAPGREN), along with other information on plant genetic resources (PGR) in the Pacific.
The myriad varieties found within cultivated plants are fundamental to the present and future productivity of agriculture. PAPGREN, which is coordinated by the Land Resources Division of the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC), helps Pacific countries and territories to conserve their crop genetic diversity sustainably, with technical assistance from the Bioversity International (BI) and support from NZAID and ACIAR.
SPC also hosts the Centre of Pacific Crops and Trees (CEPaCT). The CEPaCT maintains regional in vitro collections of crops important to the Pacific and carries out research on tissue culture technology. The CEPaCT Adviser is Dr Mary Taylor (MaryT@spc.int), the CEPaCT Curator is Ms Valerie Tuia (ValerieT@spc.int).
PAPGREN coordination and support
Mr William Wigmore
Mr Adelino S. Lorens
Dr Lois Englberger
Mr Apisai Ucuboi
Dr Maurice Wong
Mr Tianeti Beenna Ioane
Mr Frederick Muller
Mr Herman Francisco
Ms Rosa Kambuou
Ms Laisene Samuelu
Mr Jimi Saelea
Mr Tony Jansen
Mr Finao Pole
Mr Frazer Bule Lehi
Interested in GIS?
Monday, October 28, 2002
Posted 2:24 PM by Luigi
With regard to the "Taro Leaf Blight Awareness-Raising and National Extension Strategy Workshop" held at Koronivia Research Station on 21 October 2002 (see post of 18 Oct. below for objectives), Dr Danny Hunter has just prepared the following report on the working group discussions:
During the plenary discussion that followed the working groups the need for an overall Taro Coordinating Committee to guide activities was highlighted. Such a group would play a similar role to the Taro Improvement Coordinating Committees (TICCs) that operate in PNG and Samoa. It was decided that one of the first functions of this committee would be to consider the activities included in the draft Action Plan.
Raising Awareness about TLB: Information and Training Needs
The activities discussed and outlined will include the preparation of extension media aimed at a variety of target audience from the general public to agricultural researchers and which can be used in a range of locations from centralized Ministry offices to the village/farm level. These media will include technical bulletins, rural radio, television, video, posters and leaflets. Additional workshops of a similar nature may be required for farmers. It is important that serious consideration is given to the content and technical language used in these media. Obviously, this will be dependent on the end user but ‘keeping it simple’ should be the basic principle. Some of the key information needs highlighted in this working group included:
- Symptoms of disease, disease development. Final, worst stage examples of the disease, information to be disseminated through visuals.
- Advertisements that highlight impact on people’s livelihoods, monetary and economic losses, macro and local, social effects on communities.
- Impact of TLB in the field.
Since awareness and information will target a diversity of audiences and address a range of sectors it will require efforts and collaboration by different stakeholders including MASLR (Research, Extension, Information & Communication, Quarantine), farmers, Health Ministry, Education Ministry, NGOs, SPC Land Resources and TaroGen.
Developing a strategy to evaluate TLB-resistant in taro
This group identified activities, constraints and assistance required to facilitate the evaluation of TLB-resistant taro in Fiji. Constraints identified included: no information on how resistant varieties would perform in Fiji, possibility of introducing new diseases and transferring taro beetle to new locations, acceptability of new varieties among farmers and lack of partners. Assistance required will include training in tissue culture, technical expertise to train local counterparts and for awareness-raising, monitoring and evaluation and post-entry quarantine costs. The adoption of a participatory plant breeding approach in Fiji was one of the important outcomes of this group.
Multiplication and distribution of TLB-resistant taro
This group identified activities relevant to support multiplication and distribution of TLB-resistant taro to farmers in Fiji. These activities ranged from lab-based multiplication to involvement of the private sector in commercial multiplication. The group identified areas of possible assistance to include upgrading tissue culture lab facilities and training in lab and field multiplication of taro. The group also stressed the importance of having a coordinating committee in place to supervise, monitor and direct such activities.
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