Statewide Papaya Production Education Program

Papaya Information

More Information on Papaya Production

Transgenic Papaya

Summary of Progress 1/99

Impact Forms To Be Printed:

Papaya Education Baseline Evaluation Form
(**use this form when conducting production education workshops, collect at end of class)


September 2000

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Project Investigators: M. Nishina, A. Arakaki, R. Ebesu, N. Nagata, R. Hamasaki, S. Fukuda, R. Sakuoka, H.D. Sato, and C.L. Chia

Resource Persons: S. Ferreira, R. Mau, and R. Uchida

Project Goal: To increase the production of papaya in the State of Hawaii.

In July 1998, the University of Hawaii College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources provided grant support to increase efficiency and productivity of papaya growers in Hawaii. CTAHR extension agents and a multi-disciplinary collaboration of specialist will conduct educational classes on the culture and production of papaya at various sites throughout the state.

1992   55.8 MILLION LBS.
1993 3,600 ACRES 58.2 MILLION LBS. 
1994 3,300 ACRES 56.2 MILLION LBS.
1995 3,740 ACRES 41.9 MILLION LBS.
1996 3,610 ACRES 37.8 MILLION LBS. 
1997 4,055 ACRES 36.0 MILLION LBS.
1998   34.4 MILLION LBS.

Figures obtained from the Hawaii Agricultural Statistics Service


1) New and Existing Farmer Education:

The termination of sugar operation at Waialua Sugar, Oahu Sugar, and Mcbryde Sugar Companies and reduction of operation at Lihue, Kekaha, and Pioneer Mill has made additional acreage available for alternate crop production. The many displaced former sugar workers in these areas are beginning to farm these lands to develop alternate sources of revenue. These producers have little experience in papaya farming and require intensive educational sessions to provide them with basic knowledge to grow papaya profitably. The same situation also faces large corporate farms, which are attempting to grow papaya to provide alternate sources of revenue. The major problems that face these new growers are disease and pest (mites and leafhoppers) control as well as proper soil nutrition.

The field demonstration teaching method will be used to increase efficiency and productivity of papaya growers in Hawaii. CTAHR extension agents and a multi-disciplinary collaboration of specialist will conduct educational classes on the culture and production of papaya at various sites throughout the state.

2) Transgenic Papaya Education:

The discovery of the papaya ring spot virus (PRV) in a commercial planting in Puna in 1992 had a significant impact on annual production with a drop to the 40 million pound range. A reduction of approximately 15 million pounds from the years prior. While annual production dropped, the percent of fruits grown on the island of Hawaii remains constant because new plantings moved from Puna to former sugar lands along the Hamakua coast. The movement of production was facilitated by the land made available from the termination of sugar production at Hilo Coast Processing and Hamakua Sugar companies. The reduction of total fresh fruit production is directly related to the spread of PRV in the commercial production sites in Puna.

The development of the transgenic "Rainbow" and "SunUp" papaya varieties will allow papaya to be grown in the virus infected areas on Oahu and Hawaii. CTAHR has accepted the responsibility to provide educational sessions for both commercial as well as the home producer as required by the license agreements signed by the Papaya Administrative Committee (PAC). In order to be proactive, it is important that these new varieties are planted in non virus areas to evaluate it for adaptability and performance (fruit size, yield, brix, etc).

Year-round educational classes will be held to certify both commercial and home producers who wish to purchase the new transgenic papaya varieties.

3) Transgenic Papaya Varietal Evaluation:

Extension faculty will install cooperator trials of transgenic varieties to observe fruit quality and production under different environmental conditions

4) Technology Transfer:

Production of a multi-disciplinary comprehensive papaya production in Hawaii CD-ROM and video. Additional research and developments to be added as technology advances.

First draft of the papaya production manual has been circulated to project investigators. At present, revisions are being made.

5) Marketing and Promotion.

CTAHR agents and specialists will work with the PAC and the Hawaii Department of Agriculture in monitoring new plantings and developing and implementing new marketing and promotion strategies.

Anticipated Outcomes

1) A significant amount of growers will increase their knowledge in the culture and production of papaya in Hawaii through educational classes and field demonstrations.

2) Adoption of recommended practices will increase efficiency and productivity of papaya growers.

3) New transgenic papaya varieties will allow continued papaya production in areas infested with the PRV.

4) An effective marketing strategy will be developed to allow commercial papaya producers to receive profitable returns for papaya produced.

5) Production of a comprehensive papaya production CD-ROM and video.