The Solomon Islands Government through the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock will ensure private and public sectors are involved in the production of vegetable seeds, guided by clear policies and procedures.
These are the remarks of the director of the Research Division of the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock, Hellen Tsatsia.
Speaking today during the launching and official recommendation of the AVRDC Tomato variety, Mrs Tsatsia says it is also important that prices of agriculture products such as improved high rate seeds are controlled.
“Solomon Islands need a consistent supply of improved vegetable seeds in order to allow farmers and other stakeholders to venture into marketing of vegetables. If we have good production of vegetables, we can export, besides selling them in Honiara market or the hotels”, she said.
Meanwhile, Acting Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock Jimi Saelea says vegetables have health and nutritional benefits apart from generating extra income for the family.
He says people who consume more vegetables are likely to have reduced risks to some chronic diseases.
The Agriculture Acting Permanent Secretary made the remarks today during the official recommendation of a new Asian Vegetable Research and Development Centre- AVRDC tomato variety in Honiara.
“People who eat more vegetables as part of their diets are likely to have reduced-risk to some chronic diseases. Vegetables are important sources of many nutrients. Furthermore, vegetables are high-valued crops for income generation, even from the cultivation of a small plot of land, just a small area, and you can sell your vegetables at the market. Therefore, intensifying a safe vegetable production in Solomon Islands can contribute to food and nutrition security of our people, which is one of the priorities of the government”, said Mr. Saelea.
He adds the newly launched tomato variety is recommended for Solomon Islands farmers and growers.
The newly launched and recommended tomato variety is known as “MAL- SI-LE-01-14.”