Boosting PNG’s global cocoa exports
The Cocoa Board of Papua New Guinea is working to improve quality and boost trade volumes of cocoa through a partnership with the Pacific Horticultural and Agricultural Market Access Plus Program (PHAMA Plus).
PHAMA Plus will work with the Cocoa Board of PNG to improve quality and reduction of smoke taint through combination dryers; variety flavour profiling; buyer linkage and trade facilitation.
Cocoa Board PNG Executive Manager – Industry Corporate Services, Mr. Anthony Vigil said during the partnership signing that strengthening PNG’s international standing in the global cocoa market will help bring value to the whole supply chain in PNG.
“Cocoa is an important commodity in rural areas of PNG. The industry employs approximately 31% of the labour force in rural communities and is a significant contributor to rural livelihoods, providing direct economic benefit to over 150,000 households in PNG,” he said.
“Through this partnership, PNG’s cocoa industry will continue to provide a growing and stable means of job security and revenue for PNG and cocoa farming households.”
This Australia and New Zealand supported collaboration aims to connect producers to specialty markets which includes supporting the industry through access to an online flavour profiling system, evaluation and logistics support.
Cocoa quality testing equipment will be supplied to select cocoa growing groups enabling growers to monitor their cocoa quality during the fermentation and drying process.
“We’re pleased to continue supporting the PNG cocoa industry by improving quality and production volumes, as well as identifying opportunities to access new specialty markets,” PHAMA Plus National Facilitator Lavinia ToVue said.
The partnership also focuses on enhancing the economic development of PNG women, youth and people living with disabilities involved in cocoa.
“A Family Farms Team (FFT) training program will be provided to growers through this partnership. This program recognises the role women and youth play in the cocoa sector and encourages farming families to look at the family unit as an important resource to be informed, included and empowered,” Ms Tovue added.
PHAMA Plus has collaborated with the PNG Cocoa Board since 2015, providing training in innovative farming practices that maximise profitability and income and maintain a sustainable value chain to improve international competitiveness for PNG sourced cocoa.
PHAMA’s support has resulted in two cocoa producers exporting cocoa to international specialty markets in Hawaii, United Kingdom, Australia and New Zealand.
Cocoa export revenue is ranked third after oil palm and coffee and contributes approximately PGK291 million per year (AUD106 million) to the PNG economy.
*For more information, please contact PHAMA Plus National Facilitator PNG Ms Lavinia ToVue on firstname.lastname@example.org