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

  • CTA
  • SPC
  • CEPaCT

     genebank locations
    Click on the thumbnail to see a map of the locations of Pacific genebanks. Click here to download a regional directory of genebanks in the Pacific, including information on their location, contact details and holdings.

    PAPGREN partners

    Mr William Wigmore
    Director of Research
    Ministry of Agriculture
    Department of Resources & Development
    P.O. Box 96
    Cook Islands
    Tel: (682) 28711-29720
    Fax: (682) 21881
    Email: cimoa@oyster.net.ck

    Mr Adelino S. Lorens
    Agriculture Pohnpei
    Office of Economic Affairs
    P.O. Box 1028
    Pohnpei 96941
    Federated States of Micronesia
    Tel: (691) 3202400
    Fax: (691) 3202127
    Email: pniagriculture@mail.fm

    Dr Lois Englberger
    Island Food Community of Pohnpei
    Research Advisor
    P.O. Box 2299
    Pohnpei 96941
    Federated States of Micronesia
    Email: nutrition@mail.fm

    Mr Apisai Ucuboi
    Director of Research
    Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries & Forest
    Koronivia Research Station
    P.O. Box 77
    Fiji Islands
    Tel: (679) 3477044
    Fax: (679) 3477546-400262
    Email: apisainu@yahoo.com

    Dr Maurice Wong
    Service du Developpement Rural
    B.P. 100
    Tahiti 98713
    French Polynesia
    Tel: (689) 42 81 44
    Fax: (689) 42 08 31
    Email: maurice.wong@rural.gov.pf

    Mr Tianeti Beenna Ioane
    Head, Research Section
    Division of Agriculture
    Ministry of Environment, Lands and Agricultural Development
    P.O. Box 267
    Tel: (686) 28096-28108-28080
    Fax: (686) 28121
    Email : agriculture@tskl.net.ki; Beenna_ti@yahoo.com

    Mr Frederick Muller
    Ministry of Resources & Development
    P.O. Box 1727
    Majuro 96960
    Marshall Islands
    Tel: (692) 6253206
    Fax: (692) 6257471
    Email: rndsec@ntamar.net

    Mr Herman Francisco
    Bureau of Agriculture
    Ministry of Resources & Development
    P.O. Box 460
    Koror 96940
    Tel: (680) 4881517
    Fax: (680) 4881725
    Email: bnrd@pnccwg.palaunet.com

    Ms Rosa Kambuou
    Principal Scientist PGR
    NARI Dry Lowlands Programme
    Laloki Agricultural Research Station
    P.O. Box 1828
    National Capital District
    Papua New Guinea
    Tel: (675) 3235511
    Fax: (675) 3234733
    Email: kambuou@global.net.pg

    Ms Laisene Samuelu
    Principal Crop Development Officer
    Crops Division
    Ministry of Agriculture, Forests, Fisheries & Meteorology
    P.O. Box 1874
    Tel: (685) 23416-20605
    Fax: (685) 20607-23996
    Email: lsamuelu@lesamoa.net

    Mr Jimi Saelea
    Director of Research
    Department of Agriculture and Livestock
    P.O. Box G13
    Solomon Islands
    Tel: (677) 27987

    Mr Tony Jansen
    Planting Materials Network
    Kastom Gaden Association
    Burns Creek, Honiara
    P.O. Box 742
    Solomon Islands
    Tel: (677) 39551
    Email: kastomgaden@solomon.com.sb

    Mr Finao Pole
    Head of Research
    Ministry of Agriculture & Forests
    P.O. Box 14
    Tel: (676) 23038
    Fax: (676) 24271
    Email: thaangana@hotmail.com

    Mr Frazer Bule Lehi
    Head of Research
    Department of Agriculture & Rural Development
    Private Mail Bag 040
    Port Vila
    Tel: (678) 22525
    Fax: (678) 25265
    Email: flehi@hotmail.com

    Other links

    Other CROP agencies
    Forum Secretariat
    University of the South Pacific

    Pacific biodiversity
    Biodiversity hotspots
    Breadfruit Institute
    Hawaiian native plants
    Intellectual property rights
    Nature Conservancy
    WWF South Pacific Program

    Other Pacific organizations
    Foundation of the Peoples of the South Pacific
    Micronesian Seminar
    Te Puna web directory

    Pacific news
    Cafe Pacific
    CocoNET Wireless
    Island Directory
    Pacific Islands News
    Pacific Islands Report
    Pacific Islands Travel
    Pacific Time
    South Pacific travel
    Time Pacific

    Interested in GIS?



    Tuesday, June 17, 2003


    The Overstory is a free e-mail agroforestry journal for practitioners, researchers, professionals, and enthusiasts. One issue is sent every two weeks focusing on a concept in related to designing, developing, and learning more about agroforestry systems. Each edition includes project development strategies, brief book recommendations, species highlights, internet links to helpful information for agroforesters, and much more.

    A full list of previous editions can be found here. There are a couple of entries by Randy Thaman of USP on traditional Pacific agroforestry, and also an interesting discussion of niche markets.

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    DSAP Kicks Off

    Development of Sustainable Agriculture in the Pacific (DSAP)

    Implementation Workshop
    24-26 June 2003
    Nadi, Fiji

    The purpose of the project is to increase sustainable agricultural production of target farm families in participating countries. This will be accomplished by taking a participatory approach with farmers and rural communities for the identification and adoption or adaptation of technologies that solve the agricultural problems of farm families. The project builds on the foundation of PRAP 1 and PRAP 6 and attempts to address problems faced during implementation of those projects. However, this project is substantially different from the previous projects. In the atolls the approach will be problem identification and testing of technologies with farmers to improve the traditional tree crop-based multi-storey agricultural systems including better integration of livestock into this system. In the low lands, the emphasis will move from research to identification and promotion of promising technologies from a variety of sources that include: improved crop varieties, pest and disease management, land conservation and agroforestry technologies. Increasing the returns to labour will be an important criteria in selecting appropriate technologies. There will be a project component for production and use of a variety of extension communications that will strengthen the promotion effort within the countries and the potential to extend the benefits beyond the target countries through SPC. Finally this project will be an important component of the SPC Agriculture Programme through which it will have access to technical assistance and training opportunities in a wide range of areas that will enhance its effectiveness.

    The project will work with the NARES, NGOs, farmer groups and the private sector in the use of participatory methods for the identification and adoption of sustainable agricultural technologies. As part of this strategy the project will enhance national capabilities in the production and use of a variety of extension communications approaches such as radio, posters, handbooks, pamphlets and video.

    Funded by the EU, the project will be implemented by the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC) and have a duration of four years. It will cover the eight Pacific ACP countries of Fiji, Kiribati, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu and Vanuatu. The OCTs of French Polynesia, New Caledonia and Wallis and Futuna will also participate in the project.

    Dr Danny Hunter is the DSAP Project Manager (DannyH@spc.int).

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    Monday, June 09, 2003

    Online Observatory of Information Society in Asia-Pacific

    04/06/2003 (UNESCO New Delhi)

    An online "Regional Observatory of the Information Society in Asia and the Pacific" (ROISAP), based on national observatories established by members of UNESCO's Asia and Pacific Information Network (APIN), was recently launched by the Ministry of Research and Technology of Indonesia and Widyatama University in Bandung, Indonesia.

    The main goal of ROISAP is to raise awareness on the ethical, legal and societal challenges brought about by ICTs. As a public service readily accessible to all, it will provide updated information on the evolution of the information society at the national and regional levels, and to foster debates on the related issues.

    "We strongly support this project, because information and knowledge is the most important factor of production and wealth creation" says Susanne Ornager from the UNESCO Office in New Delhi. "How well an individual, an organization, and an entire society can harness, access, share, and make use of available information and knowledge will ultimately decide their ability to generate economic growth and to enhance the quality–of-life for all".

    The new regional Observatory complements UNESCO's "Observatory on the Information Society", an international gateway to web resources related to the development of the Information Society worldwide.

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    Sunday, June 08, 2003

    NZ Releases Biotech Strategy

    The following from Crop Biotech Update, a weekly summary of world developments in agri-biotech for developing countries, produced by the Global Knowledge Center on Crop Biotechnology, International Service for the Acquisition of Agri-biotech Applications SEAsiaCenter (ISAAA), and AgBiotechNet.

    New Zealand has released its Biotechnology Strategy, the country's framework for "reaping the benefits of biotechnology in a responsible and sustainable way." This strategy is about developing the biotechnology sector with care," says Minister of Research, Science and Technology Pete Hodgson.

    The Biotechnology Taskforce, set up under the Government's Growth and Innovation Framework, developed the strategy. The Taskforce highlighted important factors including a strong knowledge, skill and research base, investment and infrastructure focused on New Zealand's strengths and strong international research links.

    "Biotechnology is an industry in itself, but it is much more than that. It generates knowledge, skills and technology that can contribute in numerous ways to achieving our economic, social and environmental aspirations," says Hodgson. "Wrestling with the opportunities and challenges presented by a fast-moving and complex sector is not easy, but standing still is not an option. That's why the strategy calls for action in three areas - growth, community engagement and effective regulation."

    "Constructive community engagement and public confidence in effective regulation will underpin growth in biotechnology," Hodgson said. "This strategy represents a commitment by the Government to work with communities, researchers and industry so New Zealanders can benefit from developing and applying our world-class biological knowledge, skills and innovation."

    The report is available online here.

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    Thursday, June 05, 2003

    Forthcoming trip to Solomon Islands

    The Solomon Island Planting Material Network (PMN) is hosting the 3rd national farmers conference for members from all over the country, and I've been invited to attend. The conference will be held in Tarakukure Secondary School, Choiseul Province, 23-27 June 2003. The theme will be "Working Together for Food Security". Representatives from local farmers organizations in Bougainville, PNG, Vanuatu and East Timor are being invited. It will be an opportunity for them to observe how PMN works with communities to preserve plant genetic resources and to share farming techniques, stories and their interest in gardening with other Melanesians.

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    Seed Storage

    If you're interested in storing seeds of native plants, this on-line manual from the Hawaii Conservation Alliance will be a very useful resource. Doesnt seem to link to IPGRI's Seed Storage Compendium, though it does mention it.

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    Monday, June 02, 2003

    Sea Levels in the Pacific

    The following websites deal with the issue of sea levels in the Pacific and their possible rise due to global warming:

    National Tidal Facility
    South Pacific Sea Level & Climate Monitoring (SPSLCMP)
    GeoScience Australia

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    Something new:

    Agrobiodiversity Weblog: For discussions of conservation and sustainable use of the genetic resources of crops, livestock and their wild relatives.  

    PestNet: For on-line information, advice and pest identification for the Pacific and beyond. Contact: Grahame Jackson.



    Pacific Mapper: For on-line mapping of point data over satellite images of the Pacific provided by Google Maps.



    DIVA-GIS: For free, easy-to-use software for the spatial analysis of biodiversity data.


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