Guadalcanal Doctor and Farmer Says They Grow Cassava for Health Benefits

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BY JOHN HOUANIHAU

GUADALCANAL medical doctor who has 40 hectares of farm, dedicated to farming cassava and potatoes wants everyone to know his farm also promotes the health benefits of cassava eating.

Managing Director of Sape farm, Dr. Paulson Bosawai Popora admits that the aim of Sape farm is not about money but the vision of the farm is to plant cassava for health benefits.

“We grow the cassava on the farm for health benefits.

No one in the country realizes that cassava has many medicinal properties that can help combat various medical conditions such as arthritis and diabetes.

“So if you have knee pain or diabetes, I am encouraging you to eat cassava.

Cooked cassava. Photo Outsourced

“Apart from combating diabetes and arthritis, cassava can also help tackle problems such as high cholesterol, skin infections, high blood pressure, liver and gallbladder disorders,” said Dr. Paulson Bosawai at the 2022 Annual Climate Justice Dialogue and Symposium held at the Multipurpose Hall in Honiara.

Environment media understands that Sape farm is the Solomon Islands’ major exporter of cassava tubers overseas. However, cassava is becoming one of the important upcoming industries in the country and the government’s ministry of agriculture and livestock is eyeing ways to improve in the future.

Cassava harvested at Sape farm in North Guadalcanal.

In May 2020, the Government through the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock (MAL) and Sape farm management signed a 2.7 million funding support agreement that will see cassava root crops transform into an industry in the future.

Dr. Paulson pointed out that Sape farm is currently supporting the government’s initiative to support its Food Security Programme in the country.

He said the aim of Sape farm is also to address the pillars of food security which include access to food, affordability, and availability.

Managing Director of Sape farm, Dr. Paulson Bosawai Popora at the Sape farm in North Guadalcanal.

“You must access food. It must be available before you can access it. But then in urban centers, you have to afford to get it. If it is not affordable then you are not meeting the food security criteria.

“As a farm, we are not only addressing food security but also supporting the food bank of the country,” the Managing Director of Sape farm said.

SAPE farm will this year open its new pack house – cassava processing facility.

The new pack house facility will produce three products – frozen cassava, grated cassava, and cassava flour. The facility is co-funded by the national government through the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock (MAL) and the Sape Medical Clinic.

Cassava harvested at Sape farm in North Guadalcanal.

Meanwhile, Paulson spent 10 years as an undergraduate student at the National Cheng Kung University (NCKU) College of Medicine in Taiwan to fulfill his dream of becoming a doctor.

In 2017, Dr. Popora also started his clinical practice by establishing the Sape Private Medical Clinic in North Guadalcanal. 

For years before he started the Sape Private Medical Clinic and Sape farm in 2017, Dr. Paulson has also been working as an external lecturer at the Solomon Islands National University’s (SINU) Faculty of Nursing, Medicine, and Health Science.


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