Prospects of Large Scale Rice Suitability Analysis in Papua New Guinea Essay

Prospects of Large Scale Rice Suitability Analysis in Papua New Guinea Essay

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Till today rice, wheat, and corn, do not form the staple food for the vast majority of Papua New Guineans. Their carbohydrate needs are still fulfilled by sweet potato, taro, yams, sago and bananas. Agriculture began in Papua New Guinea (PNG) about 10,000 years ago as shown by archaeological research where starch was found on stone tools excavated in Kuk in western highlands. It suggested that taro was cultivated in Kuk at that time. A number of staple food crops such as banana, sago, taro, greater yam, highland and lowland pitpits etc. were domesticated by the people of New Guinea area thousands of years ago [1]. PNG with one percent of world geographical land area inhabit 5% of the world’s biodiversity [2]. Traditionally, PNG farmers have a culture of actively sustaining this prolific biodiversity through their ago old agricultural practice [3]. In the 1884 colonial period formally started when most local economies depended almost entirely on the cultivation of staple crops as the basis of their livelihood. The crops included sweet potato, taro, yams and sago and these were supplemented with bananas, sugarcane etc. The shift to cultivation appears to have become the dominant means of acquiring food by 1880s [4]. But then, unlike many countries in Asia- Pacific region, Papua New Guinea did not change its food habit appreciably with the passing time. With the progress of development of human society, the new generation Papua New Guineans are showing ostensible preference for grain crop ‘rice’ as the staple food. Here is the relevance of finding suitable rice growing areas in Papua New Guinea in order to discover its inherent potential to transcend into a rice exporting country from a rice importing country. Crop-land suitability a...


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...utilisation of Natural Resources”.
[4] Laccey, R., (1981). Agricultural production on the eve of colonialism. In: D Denoon and C. Snowden (eds), A History of Agriculture in Papua New Guinea: A time to plant and a time to uproot. Institute of Papua New Guinea Studies, Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea.
[5] Perveen, F., Ryota, N., Imtiaz, U., and Hossain, K. M. D., (2007). “Crop land suitability analysis using a multicriteria evaluation and GIS approach, In: 5th International Symposium on Digital Earth”, pp. 1-8, The University of California, Berkeley, USA.
[6] Papua New Guinea Resource Information System - PNGRIS, (2009). The Land-Use Section, Science and Technology Branch, Department of Agriculture and Livestock, 3rd ed., P.O Box 1863, Boroko, NCD, Papua New Guinea.
[7] USDA (United State Department of Agriculture), Soil texture classification,http://soils.usda.gov

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