Suppressed rainfall as a result of an El Niño event later this year might affect a wide range of crops and water systems across Fiji. The Fiji Meteorological Service (FMS) said that the country would receive more than 80 per cent of its annual rainfall during the wet season, from November to April.
It also stated: “However, due to the fact that significantly suppressed rainfall occurred during some of the months within the wet season, and the chances of an El Niño (drier than usual conditions) developing during the May to July 2023 period, there is a likelihood of suppressed rainfall to affect parts of the country as we move further into the dry season – May to October.”
If rainfall continues to be suppressed, initially, the following crops are likely to be affected: at three months: cabbage, tomatoes, beans, eggplant, okra, tomatoes, watermelon, rice, crops (yam, taro, cassava, pasture). By six months, corn, pineapple, pawpaw, dalo (vuci), tapi, kumala (carrot variety) will be affected. After a year, coconuts, breadfruit, mango, kava, banana, vudi, fruit trees (for instance, noni, lemon, orange) are likely to be affected.