Director, IRETA & (Acting) Head of the School (SAF
School of Agriculture and Food Technology
University of the South Pacific
He would have completed 46 years of professional service with 20 years (1969–1989) with the Government of Fiji and 26 years (1990-2016) as the Director of the of the Institute for Research, Extension and Training in Agriculture (IRETA), and as Associate Professor, Head of the School of Agriculture and Food Technology since 2012–2016 with the University of the South Pacific based at the Alafua Campus in Samoa. Qualifications Mohammed Umar holds a Master of Science degree from the University of West Virginia, USA, a Bachelor of Agriculture Science Degree from University of Queensland, Australia, and a Diploma in Tropical Agriculture from Fiji. He also had professional trainings in Japan and the Netherlands.
Soil health for me is the basis for sustainable food production in the Pacific. With the impact of climate change and continuous use of the same piece of land for food production, our soils are losing productivity. The best strategy in my view to prevent soil depletion is to adopt permaculture as a preferred method of farming system. Permaculture will ensure soil health, environmental protection, conservation and sustainable use of land for crops and livestock production. Pacific’s dependency on agriculture for its income, employment and socio-economic development makes soil health the key to our natural resources management and our survival.