About Tei Tei Taveuni
TTT was a result of some farmer's participation in a Meeting held at Mua Research and Development Station Taveuni in June 2009. The meeting was about soil depletion and deforestation in Taveuni arranged by the Agricultural Department - Taveuni and sponsored by SPC.
The problems highlighted in the meeting were:
- Highest rate of deforestation in Fiji.
- Unsustainable use of land and consequently declining soil fertility.
- Problems with water catchment management for drinkable water.
The unsustainable land use affects the production of dalo of which Taveuni produce a large part of the export share. Dalo production is also the main reason for the increased deforestation.
The result of the meeting was a report of "Revitalizing Taveuni" which was at a later state presented to the Government. Another result was Tei Tei Taveuni (TTT), a group of Taveuni farmers.
TTT was started to address the issues from that meeting by finding viable solutions to:
- Sustainable farming and soil regeneration.
- Food security and sustainable livelihood.
- Conservation and environmental awareness.
The intension is to do so by;
- Generating information and passing it to members and farmers.
- Organising educational courses for farmers.
- Implementing crop trials for farmers to see.
Farmers are a conservative lot and the only way forward is to prove that new and more sustainable methods are viable.
What We Would Like To Do
- Establish Soil schools and other courses. To empower the farmer by giving him knowledge/tools to make the right decision.
- Making trials on our farms to se and understand the results of:
- Biochar trials farmscale
- Mukuna bean trials as green manure crops
- Bio fertilizer trials
- Vermi-culture for vegetable farming
- Moringa/Saijan trials for green manure
- Composting and microbiology
- Smart farming by only adding the missing minerals.
- Producing local fertilizer
The plan is to work with nature and feed the soil including the microbiology, which will then feed the plant as an alternative to feeding the plant with mineral fertilizer as we do now.
The plan is to produce as much input locally and next best nationally to grow crops.
What We Have Done
- Shared info between our members.
- Been involved in getting Mukuna beans to Fiji from Tonga, producing seeds and getting it out to farmers.
- Held a public ½ day soil course in Somosomo.
- Held a 2 day soil school with 44 participants and are working on improving the next Soil School which is scheduled for the end of May and beginning of June 2010. The Soil school will this time consist of 2 days basic soil school for new farmers and 2 days advanced soil school for farmers that participated in the first School in February.
- TTT holds Soil Schools every quarter. Basic course and advance course and later some special subject courses. The idea is to keep improving the course so that it fits the farmers in Taveuni and thereby also farmers other places in the Pacific.