The R&D and extension services of the coconut industry are provided by the CCIL. The Institute was established following the amalgamation of then Cocoa and Coconut Research Institute (CCRI) and Cocoa and Coconut Extension Agency (CCEA) in August 2003. The Cocoa Board and the KIK are the shareholding boards, each with equal shares of the Institute. CCIL’s mandate is R&D and extension in cocoa and coconut production, processing and marketing. Most of the coconut research work is based at the Stewart Research Stations (SRS) at Murnas in Madang Province.

The coconut R&D programs at SRS include: breeding (including maintenance of coconut seed gardens & South Pacific Coconut Genebank); agronomy & farming systems; plant protection (pests and diseases) and postharvest (processing & quality assurance) & marketing systems.

As discussed earlier, and as recommended by the FER of CBAs, the Institute will be voluntary liquidated and its current coconut R&D and extension functions will be transferred to the KIK. This would entail these functions to be housed under one organisation to rationalise and effectively coordinate its mandated R&D and extension functions.

Bogia Coconut Syndrome (BCS) impact (left): Scientists using malaise trap (above) are working on identifying the vector (insect) that carries and spreads the phytoplasma that causes BCS. Threats to bananas, taro and oil palm and betelnut must be addressed to avoid food security, cash income generation and wider economic impact.

KOKONAS INDASTRI KOPORESEN