BY PATRICK NIATO TOM
The Ministry for Agriculture and Livestock has vowed to review the country’s coffee act.
He said this while describing Papua New Guinea coffee as one of the finest premium coffee that is loved and drunk by consumers in more than 34 countries throughout the world.
According to the Minister Benny Allen, speaking during the inaugural PNG national coffee symposium 2019, he told stakeholders at the two days 2019 inaugural national coffee symposium that the ministry of agriculture and live stock will be reviewing the coffee act after the coming agriculture summit.
When emphasizing on the importance of the up and coming national agriculture summit which will be jointly held and hosted by the agriculture department and commerce and trade, Mr Allen made it clear that immediately after the summit they will work on reviewing the act.
“The K4 parchment price that we have been sitting now is stilling there and the K4 per kilo has been going on for many years and when the price is okay it goes up to K5 to K6.
And why I am saying this is because our farmers have not been supplying or sending enough.
“We have to ensure our farmers increase supplies when the demand is high and get a better price for their cash corps and they have the alternative choices of considering the prices on the market and because we don’t have contact outside we still sell to the exporters who have the exporting license and that’s where the problem exists,” he said.
“In the review one of the things we will be looking at the exporters. I will make sure the exporters have an extension program and connect to the plantations.
You must adds up block farmers up to 10,000 or more to be eligible to granted a trading (exporting) licence,” he said.
“The important thing that I think we need to do is for the coffee industry corporation (CIC) to control policy so that we get a better price for our farmers,” he said.
Mr Allen stated that is the way we will do with the exporters connecting with farmers and have their extension program to ensure quality coffee is coming from the farmers so that they can export quality coffee abroad.
“No one knows PNG coffee although we produce the best coffee in the world no one knows because the people who buy our coffee blend our coffee and they say this coffee comes from this country and this coffee comes from this brand so no one knows where quality cream coffee comes from. That’s why we will still maintain the K4 price.”
“The review will capture all those so and we will be coming around to get your views on what we can do to work together with CIC and other important stake holders and also our farmers and try to have our farmers have a better price,” Mr Allen said.