BY MIKE TUA
HOSPITAL ship USNS Mercy (T-AH 19) Veterinary Personnel are currently been working closely with the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock and together they have developed a very robust program to address some of the agriculture and veterinary needs in the Solomon Islands as part of the Pacific Partnership 2022.
Pacific Partnership 2022 Mission Commander, Capt. Hank Kim told journalists that today the visiting veterinary team visited a few local farms and other agriculture project settings.
“My understanding in the Solomon Islands, our veterinary professionals have been either not present for some time and so we brought about eight veterinary professional officers from the U.S Army to provide veterinary counseling and services to personnel here in Honiara and Guadalcanal.
“Today we went to a piggery and I visited it too and our team, I think visited four farms to talk about what are the needs and concerns that the farmers there have.
“We also saw a couple of chicken coups and we are talking about supply chains and some of their medical concerns that they have for the poultry there and the chicken as well,” Capt. Hank Kim told journalists at the press conference held at the US consulate office in Honiara.
Meanwhile, U.S. Navy Pacific Partnership, Veterinarian Services Planner, Capt. Kathleen Stewart earlier told local journalists at the recent press conference held in Honiara that they will visit various agricultural farms in Guadalcanal province while in Honiara.
She said the touring visit will include veterinary professionals from their visiting team and representatives from the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock (MAL).
“We will be starting with the team of our veteran partners as well as personnel from the MAL.
“We’ll go out to the various farms, some pig farms, and some chicken farms so we can conduct inspections and see how you raise pigs and chickens and different livestock animals.
“From there, we will go into a few discussions and days of learning where I can learn from your professionals and you can me and we can exchange that knowledge should increase productivity and efficiency at the Agriculture and Livestock systems here in the Solomon Islands,’’ she said.
Capt. Kathleen Stewart said that the program will be ended with examining of dogs and cats in collaboration with representatives from the MAL and their team of local experts.
“We will have our touring team and some representatives from the MAL who will work together to hold these examination days and be able to do the examinations and to provide advice for any issues found in dogs and cats.