Coffee Borer : could wipe out 80 percent of PNG coffee

Papua New Guinea,in the South Pacific comprises about 600 small islands and shares a land-border with Indonesia whose Coffee Industry supports much of the PNG population and brings in on average more than $US150 million in revenue each year is now under threat of Coffee Borer Beetle.

Native to Africa, the Coffee Borer beetle is considered one of the most harmful coffee crop pests in the world.

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The PNG government said 80 percent of PNG’s coffee production could be lost if the threat from the beetle is not dealt with.

The general manager for research and growers services in the PNG Coffee Industry Corporation, Mark Kenny said it first appeared in 2009 in remote regions but was successfully eradicated.

“If this pest cannot be contained and managed properly then we stand to lose up to 80 percent of the coffee production.”

“So that is a massive loss that we will experience if we do not take corrective measures that will minimise the impact on our production.”

Mr Kenny said a survey was being carried out to determine the extent of the beetle’s spread, which would determine what action authorities would take.

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“And the first option would be to look at the possibility of eradication.If we cannot do it then we look at how we can contain it in the area that it has occurred. But if the pest has already spread out of the area of incursion and it covered a lot of areas of coffee growing area then we look at ways to manage it instead of trying to contain it within that local area.”


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