CNMI Map
Prospective StudentsInternational StudentCurrent StudentProa PortalSummer AvatarROTC Avatar
Newsroom

NMC-CREES awarded $1.79M to study pineapple cultivation (May 14, 2020)

The Northern Marianas College’s Cooperative Research, Extension, and Education Services (NMC-CREES) was recently awarded $1.79 million to research commercial pineapple cultivation in the CNMI.

The project, which is funded by the US Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture, will concentrate on tissue culture multiplication and the development of sustainable, climate-resilient, commercial cultivation of pineapple farming systems in the region.

“We chose pineapple as a target food crop for production because of its nutritional benefits, as well as its potential for commercial production,” said Dr. Virenda M. Verma, project director for the pineapple study.

Verma, who has been a leading horticultural biotechnologist involved in agricultural research in the Micronesian region for over 20 years, said that the research project was developed based on input from agriculture professionals and stakeholders of the CNMI.

“We specifically designed this project to meet the local needs of the community,” Verma said.

According to Verma, the average crop yield of a properly managed pineapple farm can be about 50-60 tons per hectare.

“The commercial cultivation of pineapple in the CNMI would promote food and nutritional security,” Verma said.

NMC-CREES Interim Dean Patty Coleman said that with the grant, the College will now be able to build a new plant biotechnology laboratory, or PBL, to be used to initiate tissue culture operations.

“We are excited to be able to have the resources to further study this great economic opportunity for the Commonwealth,” Coleman said.

The PBL will house specialized rooms for equipment sterilization, aseptic inoculation and culture maintenance, and green and screen houses. The new facility can be also used to house future biotechnology projects.

According to Coleman, the pineapple project will be done to ensure the year-round availability of high-quality planting material of pineapple in CNMI.

The main objectives are to design and establish an appropriate plant biotechnology facility, produce elite and disease-free seedlings of locally preferred pineapple cultivars through tissue culture multiplication, and provide appropriate recommendations to local farmers for sustainable, commercial, climate-resilient pineapple production.

“This is an amazing feat for our small island community,” said Frankie Eliptico, NMC Interim President. “The additional research lab will open new opportunities for our island residents, as well as help ensure that pineapple production will contribute to our local economy.”

Northern Marianas College Cooperative Research, Extension, and Education Services (NMC-CREES) provides research and technical advice in the fields of agriculture, aquaculture, natural resources, community and youth development, health, and nutrition that is locally sustainable, environmentally safe, and economically feasible, in order to enhance the well-being and improve the quality of life of the people living in the CNMI.

For more information on NMC-CREES, visit crees.marianas.edu.



:::  Back to NMC News list  :::


Notice to Persons with Disabilities

Northern Marianas College (NMC) is committed to ensuring that all persons have equal access to its programs, opportunities, and information resources, including those on its institutional website in accordance to the requirements of Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990.

We apologize for any inconvenience as we work on bringing NMC’s website into full compliance. For immediate assistance, please contact Lucille Deleon Guerrero by email [email protected] or by calling (670) 237-6874.

If you wish to report an issue related to the accessibility of any content on NMC’s website, including a complaint about the accessibility of a document, form, or statement, you may do so by contacting the NMC’s IT Department by email at [email protected]. In your email please include the following information:

  1. The URL you are having accessibility issues with;
  2. The accessibility issue your are experiencing;
  3. Your name, phone number, and email address.

If you would like to file a formal grievance against the Northern Marianas College pursuant to the requirements of Section 504 and Title II, you may submit such grievance to the Office of the NMC President, P.O. Box 501250, Saipan MP 96950 or email [email protected].

You may also file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education (USDOE) Office for Civil Rights. More information about filing a complaint with USDOE can be found at https://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocr/docs/howto.html.

SaipanTinianRota