Tonga top kava exporter to Australia

March 26, 2024 3:22 pm

Tonga remains the largest exporter of Kava into Australia.

This was revealed by the DFAT Pacific Integration and Economic Division Office during the Regional Kava Development Strategy and Geographical Indication (GI) for Kava meeting.

Assistant Director Caroline Kempeneer shares that since the initiation of the Kava Pilot program in December 2019, Pacific producers have collectively exported over 321 tonnes of Kava.

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Kempeneer says despite Fiji and Vanuatu being notable exporters in terms of volume, Tonga holds the top position in the Australian market.

Highlighting certain regulations affecting the importation of Kava into Australia, Kempeneer notes that certain territories within Australia restrict the importation of Kava along with a few other commodities.

However, she emphasizes that since the ban on Kava importation was lifted in October, the Kava Pilot program has relaxed regulations, granting Australians greater access to the product.

Kempeneer stresses the significance of this decision, stating that it acknowledges the cultural and economic importance of Kava for the Pacifica community residing in Australia.

She adds that the Kava Pilot program was launched to foster stronger cultural, economic, and trade ties between Australia and Pacific Island nations.