Friday, January 14, 2011

Cane Grower May Switch to Fruit Farming as Sugar Industry is Dead!


Giant pawpaw surprise farmer

by Sera Whippy
Fiji Times - Friday, January 14, 2011
WHEN Lautoka farmer Mahendra Prasad bought a giant pawpaw last year, he thought he'd try his luck and shed the seeds for planting.
To his surprise, one of the trees from the seeds bore a fruit larger than he had imagined.
Yesterday, he showed off the giant pawpaw which weighed more than four and a half kilograms.
"I did not expect it to be this big. This is great," said Mr Prasad.
The pawpaw was grown in Solovi, Nadi where his sister lives.
"This pawpaw is from my sister's farm but the tree I planted on my farm is not ready," he said.
"I think it is because of the soil quality."
The 60-year-old is the president for the Fiji Cane Lorry Operators Association.
He said the pawpaw was a great way for farmers to slowly switch to fruit and vegetable farming.
"Sugar cane planting is no longer viable in this country because it costs a lot to maintain and it takes long to be ready for harvesting," he said.
"That is why the younger generation are not going into cane farming," he said.
"However, if farmers could start growing these pawpaws, they would make a lot more money and have cash on hand."
He owned 17 acres of cane farm and used parts of it to plant chillies, pawpaws, corn and other vegetables.

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