1. What is E-Agriculture?
E-Agriculture is an emerging field focusing on the enhancement of agricultural and rural development through improved information and communication processes. It is evolving in scope as new Information Communication Technology (ICT) applications continue to be harnessed in the agriculture sector. In this context, ICT is used as an umbrella term encompassing all ICTs including devices, networks, services and applications; these range from innovative Internet-era technologies and sensors to other pre-existing aids such as telephones, mobiles, television, radio and satellites. More specifically it involves the conceptualization, design, development, evaluation and application of innovative ways to use ICTs in the rural domain, with a primary focus on agriculture, fisheries, forests and livestock.
2. PNG E-Agriculture
The PNG E-Agriculture Project is a collaboration between the Department of Agriculture and Livestock (DAL), National Information and Communication Technology Authority (NICTA), Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO), International Telecommunication Union of the United Nations (ITU), and other stakeholders including key agencies in the agriculture, natural resource and ICT sectors.
The notion was discussed and elaborated between 2016-2017 through two stakeholder workshops in Port Moresby under the leadership of DAL, supported by technical expertise from FAO and ITU through their regional offices in Bangkok, Thailand.
The outcome of this process was the development of the PNG National E-Agriculture Strategy (2017-2023) which is a strategic framework to support and embrace agricultural development in PNG through the adoption and use of ICTs and related technologies. The strategy also sets the vision, expected outcomes and captures the country’s agricultural and development priorities; all of which are framed into an action plan for the next five years in line with PNG’s political/government cycle.
The project has immediately gone into implementing the priority e-solutions recommended in the strategy and action plan; one of which is the development of this website for DAL.
The project is now into piloting at provincial level to service the PNG farming communities. Two provinces – Jiwaka and East Sepik – have been identified for piloting. Project partners have since been in dialogue with provincial governments and leaders of the two provinces. Following scoping missions in late 2017, the project team is into project formulation in early 2018 to deploy some of the prioritised e-solutions based on identified farmer and agri-business needs.
A capacity development effort on Agromet Advisory Services was implemented for PNG agriculture at the RIMES Sub-regional Hub in Port Moresby during May 22-24 2018. Attended by 25 representatives from PNG agriculture, fisheries and forestry sectors, the initiative was conducted by RIMES with the support of DAL, FAO and NWS. Click here for more information.
An AgriTech training was conducted for 20 farmers in the Jiwaka Province who are members of the Jiwaka Women and Your in Agriculture networks. The 3-day event was conducted at the Kingku Training Institute at Kurumul. Click here for more details.
5. E-Agriculture Piloting in two provinces – Jiwaka and East Sepik