Honourable Inia Seruiratu, Minister for Agriculture, Rural and Maritime Development and National Disaster Management delivers his address.
The University of the South Pacific’s (USP) Pacific Technical and Further Education (Pacific TAFE) hosted the launch of the local cookbook Kana Vinaka on 21 April 2017 at the Oceania Centre for Arts, Culture and Pacific Studies, Laucala Campus, Suva.
Kana Vinaka is the first local cookbook on contemporary island cuisine authored by Chef Colin Chung. The ingredients in the recipes are locally produced and readily available in the markets.
While launching the book, Minister for Agriculture, Rural and Maritime Development and National Disaster Management, Honourable Inia Seruiratu said his Ministry is a proud sponsor of Kana Vinaka, given that all recipes in the cookbook are made from produce grown by local farmers.
“Considering that a significant amount of food consumed in Fiji is imported, this book with its innovative recipes and focus on seasonal, locally-produced food will be easily adopted in schools and educational institutes,” Honourable Seruiratu said.
He added that the book will provide great ideas to local and International chefs to use local ingredients and present Fijian delicacies in a contemporary or modern fashion to visitors and hence, assist the Fijian Government’s efforts to lower import payments and increase farmers’ incomes.
Honourable Seruiratu noted that in hospitality, food and beverage reigns supreme and is the largest element of the hospitality industry and lasting impressions for holiday makers and visitors are generally around experiences with food and beverages, adding that, “today, cuisine has become a central part of the tourism experience.”
As part of the launch, Pacific TAFE’s Commercial Cookery students prepared the menu and Hospitality students served them under the expert guidance of Chef Colin Chung and the teaching staff of Pacific TAFE.
(From L-R): Chef Colin Chung, Author of Kana Vinaka, Honourable Inia Seruiratu, Minister for Agriculture, Rural and Maritime Development and National Disaster Management and Professor Rajesh Chandra, USP Vice-Chancellor and President.
In his address, USP Vice-Chancellor and President, Professor Rajesh Chandra said it was an honour to host the launch at the University.
He highlighted that Kana Vinaka will become a teaching tool for the University’s programmes.
“Pacific TAFE has an active programme of promoting the use of local cuisine, and what we did today is an important complimentary activity to what Pacific TAFE does,” Professor Chandra said.
Professor Chandra said that USP has been contributing to Human Resource Development in the tourism industry for many years.
The University has a School of Tourism and Hospitality Management (STHM), headed by Professor Marcus Stephenson, which offers internationally accredited higher studies from Bachelor’s level to PhD.
Talking about Pacific TAFE, Professor Chandra said that it is the fastest growing section of the University that offers skills-based qualifications which are competent in the areas of business, tourism, hospitality, arts and humanities, science technology and environment.
He informed the guests at the launch that three (3) programmes of Pacific TAFE have been internationally accredited by the International Centre of Excellence in Tourism and Hospitality Education (THE-ICE) and these are the Certificate IV in Hospitality Operations, Certificate III in Commercial Cookery and Certificate IV in Commercial Cookery.
The cook book is being sold for $50.00 at USP Bookcentre and other bookshops in Suva.
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