Building Farmer’s Fresh Produce Capacity!
MDF’s support to NKW Fresh enabled the company to maintain consistency in supply volumes and quality to meet market needs.
NKW Fresh is a fresh produce company based in Wau, Morobe Province. The company sources fresh produce from local smallholder farmers and supplies to catering companies in mining camps in Morobe and retail supermarkets in Lae, Kokopo and Port Moresby. It has two buying depots located in Lae and Wau.
Temperate climate produce such as broccoli, cauliflower and herbs are still imported today despite PNG’s capacity to grow many of these crops. This is largely due to poor connectivity and inefficiencies in the fresh produce supply chain.
NKW Fresh has had a few challenges to deal with, ranging from lack of infrastructure and limited availability to access to appropriate agricultural inputs. Poor infrastructure makes connections to markets difficult and costly, and the lack of farmer knowledge means that there are issues around crop planning, demand forecasting, high wastage, consistency of supply volumes, and quality of the fresh produce.
Through the partnership with MDF, NKW Fresh recruited Field Extension Officers (FEOs) to educate farmers on better crop planning and cultivation practices. There was a focus also on strengthening the supply chain with the development of a farmer database that helped to identify and track farmers’ production. Additionally, a mobile crop management software was installed and used by FEOs to collect data.
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