Green Pearl Guava Launched in Market
Guava has the potential to reduce non-communicable disease, says Minister for Agriculture, Rural and Maritime Development and National Disaster Management Inia Seruiratu. Mr Seruiratu made this comments while officially launching the new ‘Green Pearl’ Guava at the Sigatoka Research Station yesterday.
The Green Pearl Guava is now released for commercial cultivation. He said there is a need to develop Fiji’s fruit industry to include more locally grown fruits in our diets. Mr Seruiratu said Fiji has been relying on its traditional fruits such as banana, pineapple, papaya and mangoes over the years.
Imported fruits such as apples, oranges, pears and grapes have also taken a wide market share. “Guava, until now has not been a commercially cultivated crop. The release of this variety has provided farmers with the opportunity to grow a new crop at commercial scale,” he said.
“A total of 2,500 seedlings of this variety has been planted as organised orchards and will start bearing fruits in a month’s time. “Market research conducted on this variety has shown great demand. Fruits can be sold in supermarkets at $7 to $10 per kilogram while hotels are willing to pay as high as $12 per kilogram. However, we need to supply these markets with consistently good quality fruits.”
He said reducing fruits and vegetable imports is a priority for the Fijian Government.
He added that research and development will continue to play an important role in Government’s plan for the long-term sustainability and growth of the agricultural sector in Fiji.
“The search is for higher yielding varieties, low cost of production, pest and disease tolerance and resilient to the effects of climate change.
“The search for excellence is a never ending process. It can take years before a high performing variety is released.
Green Pearl the new Guava variety was introduced from Taiwan in 2007 and has undergone ten years of field research.
“Guava has been hailed as one of the ‘super’ fruits due to the numerous health benefits it offers,” he said.
“It is low in calories and fats but carry several vital vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. The fruit is a very rich source of soluble dietary fibre which makes it a good bulk laxative.
“With its enormous nutrient benefits, Guava are therefore has the potential to help reduce NCDs.”
Minister for Agriculture, Rural and Maritime Development and NDMO Inia Seruiratu with team leader of the Taiwan Technical Mission Yeong-Lang Yang the new ‘Green Pearl’ Guava at the Sigatoka Research Station on September 25, 2017.