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Enhancing returns from high-value agroforestry species in Vanuatu

This project aims to improve the Vanuatu planted forestry sector by making new and existing technologies more available and helping more smallholders to adopt three valuable trees: Canarium, sandalwood and whitewood.
Vanuatu could establish a smallholder-led planted forest industry, based on valuable timbers and non-timber products such as canarium (Canarium indicum) nut, sandalwood oil (Santalum austrocaledonicum) and whitewood (Endospermum medullosum) timber.
The Government of Vanuatu recently initiated a Decade of Reforestation under which millions of trees will be planted. For this to be effective, landowners need access to high quality germplasm, knowledge of appropriate silvicultural systems and locally appropriate processing systems that can provide good returns from value-added products.
Smallholder farmers in Vanuatu are eager to engage in small-scale commercial planted forestry. They are often unaware of technologies that can make forestry more efficient, while insufficient government and institutional resources make it difficult to provide extension for smallholders.
Building on previous research, this project will broaden and enhance the genetic resources available for Canarium and sandalwood plantations and improve smallholders' ability to produce high-value whitewood timber products locally.