Bougainville’s cocoa beans will be one of the first commodities to undergo testing at Bougainville Agricultural Commodity Regulatory Act (BACRA) laboratory, a lab that is expected to boost the agriculture industry and will enable the quality testing for locally produced agricultural commodities.
The K2.4 million laboratory and offices, funded by the Australian and New Zealand governments, marks an important milestone for the Autonomous Bougainville Government and Bougainville’s agricultural sector.
In addition to a testing laboratory, the facility includes an Information Technology room, four office spaces, a reception area, a fully equipped conference room, a solar power system and standby generator, disability access to a carpark, a walkway, and toilets, as well as loading and unloading space for product samples.
The ABG Minister for Primary Industries, Geraldine Paul, said the BACRA facility will assist local farmers and buyers to understand more about the quality of their produce and to pinpoint those aspects of production that need improvement.
She added, “With the newly installed BACRA testing lab, local cocoa and copra growers, including subsistence farmers, can access information about their products.”
“Having this lab here in Buka means farmers will have easier and quicker access to results that will assist them to improve the quality of their produce.”