05 May 2021
Rice refining is done at home.
The FAO project in favor of the Ministry of Agriculture of the Republic of Fiji aims to ensure household tools so that the rice produced on the islands is cleaned of chaff before consumption, even if in the absence of collective milling facilities.
Most of the rice production is carried out by small-scale rice producers. Actions carried out by AGT International, on behalf of FAO (and for a value of over 300 thousand US dollars) were coordinated by the Project Manager Giancarlo Andreella and consisted in delivering 1100 “Rice Mills” (small electric mills for cleaning of rice and other grains) for domestic use.
The project started last summer and terminated these past few days with the customs clearance of the containers delivering the Chinese-made machines to Suva, capital of the Republic. Two Chinese engineers were also sent to Suva, to ensure the correct assembly of all the components (motor with main body). The 1100 Rice Mills with be ready and functioning within May and will be delivered to the various communities.
Rice is cultivated on the two main islands of the archipelago, consisting of 322 islands, of which 106 are permanently inhabited, and 522 islets. The two major islands, Viti Levu and Vanua Levu, make up about 87% of the population, which in total does not exceed one million inhabitants.
Rice became the staple food of the Republic of Fiji due to the strong local presence of an Indian community, which forms the main component of the “Professionals” active in the country.