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Enhancing value added products and environmental benefits from agroforestry systems in Papua New Guinea and the Pacific

Project Code: FST/2014/067
Program: Forestry
Research Program Manager: Dr. Nora Devoe
Project Leader: Helen Wallace - University of Sunshine Coast
OCT 2015
SEP 2020
Project Status: Legally Committed/Active
Key partners
Ministry of Commerce, Industry, Labour and Immigration
Ministry of Trade, Commerce, Industry and Tourism
National Agricultural Research Institute
Southern Cross University
University of Adelaide


A key result of this market-focused agroforestry crop systems project is that smallholders in the Pacific Islands benefit from improved economic, social and environmental outcomes.

Approximately 80% of people in Papua New Guinea and the Pacific Islands live in rural areas and rely on agriculture, fishing and forestry for their livelihoods. 

Most smallholders are semi- subsistence farmers, with women often responsible for growing food. There is great potential to add value to primary products from agroforestry crops—a move that would help create jobs and enhance business opportunities for small and medium enterprises. 

Tree crops can be integrated into agroforestry systems with other short-term crops, such as taro, sweet potato and banana, to produce a quicker return on investment; however, there is little information on the performance of these integrated agroforestry systems in terms of the best species, crop production and economic and environmental benefits to smallholders.

Project outcomes

  • Improved financial status of: smallholders, by providing access to the cash economy and a market for their products; women, by expanding opportunities to sell products and for paid work for fruit and nut processing; communities, by reducing crop losses from spoilage; processors, by building capacity in value-adding and producing products targeted to market needs; and regions, through import substitution.
  • Increased environmental benefits in areas where new agroforestry systems are replanted to reduce erosion and the impact of floods.
  • Greater capacity in market analysis and value-adding and enhanced public-private collaboration in partner countries.