Fiji Kava opens nursery in Taveuni

June 27, 2022 10:30 am

The kava nursery at Tutu Rural Training Centre in Taveuni.

A commercial kava nursery has been opened at the Tutu Rural Training Centre in Taveuni to strengthen the kava supply chain in Fiji.

The nursery is a co-investment by long-standing partners Fiji Kava and the Australia and New Zealand-supported PHAMA Plus.

Founder and Director of Fiji Kava, Zane Yoshida says the partnership with Tutu is a step in strengthening its robust supply chain in Fiji.

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The partnership is the first of its kind in relation to kava in Fiji if not the Pacific and will help improve the quality of kava in the future

The commercial nursery will be used to grow select noble varieties of kava which Fiji Kava will procure from Tutu farmers under the terms of a supply agreement.

Yoshida says the commercial kava nursery supports rapid, disease-free multiplication of the noble varieties that are required to service export markets.

Speaking at the opening ceremony, iTaukei Trust Fund CEO Aisake Taito says they are delighted to be partnering in this pilot project with Tutu Rural Training Center.

He adds that they will inculcate the successes from the Tutu learning experience and blend it with their own objectives for commercial self-determination for our iTaukei and Rotuman youths, through their developmental partnership with Fiji Kava and PHAMA.

Head of the Tutu Rural Training Center Father Petero Matairau says the initiative will help the current and post-graduates utilize their resources well to facilitate market demand and have an impact on the value chain analysis for kava.

The collection hub also introduces a number of innovative supply chain approaches, involving co-ownership by the kava suppliers, access to training, financial literacy and a micro-credit facility through Fiji Kava’s newly formed tripartite partnership with Tutu Rural Training Centre and the iTaukei Trust Fund Board – TTFB.

It also aims to provide technical support and training to younger farmers, men and women working in the kava sector, with a particular emphasis on sustainability and climate-smart farming practices.