Three praised for launching of mushroom, rice projects

August 18, 2017

Source: The National | By ZACHERY PER

CHINA’S economic counsel Liu Linlin has praised three key people instrumental in the establishment of juncao (mushroom) technology and dry land rice projects in Eastern Highlands.

Linlin yesterday said former Eastern Highlands adviser for natural resource Brian Wai, former Eastern Highlands Governor Peti Lafanama and juncao technology founder Prof Lin Zhanxi had been instrumental in bringing the mushroom and dry land rice projects to Eastern Highlands.

He said Wai worked hard to bring the mushroom cultivation and dry land rice into Eastern Highlands and Lafanama provided the financial back up and political will as governor of the province then.

He said as founder of the projects, Prof Zhanxi provided the skills, knowledge and technology to establish them some 20 years ago.

“The juncao (mushroom) project and dry land rice projects have huge potential to generate income and solve food security, give financial independence to families and alleviate poverty,” Linlin said.

He made these remarks at the handing over of juncao technology and dry land rice project equipment and graduation of 70 juncao technology trainees in Goroka yesterday.

Eastern Highlands Provincial Administrator Samson Akunai thanked the Chinese delegation that traveled from Fujian province of China, Prof Zhanxi, Wai and Lafanama for their hard work to bring the projects to Eastern Highlands.

“I assure our undivided support from the provincial administration to commercialise the projects so the people of Eastern Highlands province can feed supermarkets, hotels and all relevant markets with our mushroom and rice projects,” Akunai said.

He invited China to invest more in Eastern Highlands to further boost the sister-province relationship between Fujian Province of China and PNG.

Zhanxi said the mushroom machine had the potential to produce 2.5 tonnes of mushroom at any one time while the rice machine could produce 10 tonnes per day.

“A packet of rice seeds we are giving can be grown on 600 hectares and the bundle of grass seeds also given can be planted on 50 square metres,” he said.

Lafanama, seeing the need to put money into families’ pockets,
introduced the technology in the province.

“Seventeen years ago we established a sister province relationship with the Fujian province of China and introduced the technology into Eastern Highlands Province.

“It is good because many people in the province are farmers who can work hard to produce mushrooms and rice to feed themselves and sell surpluses for an income,” Lafanama said.

Linlin and Akunai opened the project in Goroka.


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