Peru and Papua New Guinea to cooperate on potato breeding and variety development

Papua New Guinea is looking to Peru for assistance in developing drought resistant potato varieties that can withstand future extreme weather conditions in the country. Prime Minister Peter O’Neill began initial discussions with the President of Peru, Dr. Pedro Pablo Kuczynski, on cooperation between the two countries, on the fringes of the APEC Leaders’ summit over the weekend of November 18th. Mr. O’Neill says Peru is the birthplace of the potato, and Peruvians take a special interest in breeding better varieties of potato. He says officials from the two countries will engage with the International Potato Center (CIP) in Peru, and consider options to develop varieties better suited for cultivation in Papua New Guinea. The Prime Minister says with increased extreme weather brought about by climate change, Papua New Guinea expects more weather events such as droughts and increased rainfall, that can destroy crops in the coming years. Mr. O’Neill says by working together, Peruvian and Papua New Guinean researchers, have the opportunity to enhance the country’s food security, and ultimately save lives. (Source: pngfacts.com)