Agrometeorology training to benefit farmers
Training on how weather and climate data can be used to benefit agriculture has been run by the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries (M.A.F.), in partnership with the Meteorology Division of the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (M.N.R.E.).
The C.E.O. of the Samoa Meteorology Division, Mulipola Ausetalia Titimaea, told Samoa Observer that the one-day training session on Tuesday specifically targeted the local farmers and he hopes they can embrace it.
"This program is being administered by the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries, and also the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment through the MET Division, so agrometeorology is how we apply the climate and weather to agriculture," he said. "We have a group called Agrometeorology Group. They are the ones who will collaborate on this project. There is also a group from the University of the South Pacific in Alafua. They are also stakeholders of this project.”
Weather updates provided by the Meteorology Division can assist farmers to make decisions on what crops to plant in line with the country’s different weather patterns, which Mulipola said is the objective of the training.
"For example, if there is normal rainfall then there is a chance for them to plant normal crops depending on the weather. If it's below normal, where a situation of drought is most likely, we will warn these farmers so that they could prepare for the situation ahead of time.”
According to Mulipola, It is hoped that the partnerships formed through the agrometeorology training will not only benefit the local farmers, but also the local partners including the two Ministries and the University of South’s Alafua Campus.