The Institute of Applied Sciences (IAS) of The University of the South Pacific Laboratory Key Technical Person for Food Chemical Testing, Mr Jeremaia Koroijiuta trained Bua Province Farmers on Kava Quality Standards on 2 – 3 September. He also attended the Fiji National Kava Taskforce Committee (FNKTC) Meeting at the Daku Resort, Savusavu on 5 September 2020. Both the training and meeting were organised by Fiji’s Ministry of Agriculture which involved stakeholders from the Ministry of Health, Biosecurity of Fiji, Fiji National University, Secretariat of the Pacific Community, PHAMA, major kava exporters and kava farmers’ representatives.
Bua kava farmers learned of Kava value chain analysis, science of kava plants, diversification and origin of kava varieties in the Pacific and Fiji, kava diseases, new improved planting techniques including tissue culture, nurseries, proper usage, effects of chemicals on farms, export regulatory requirements, exporters expectation of kava quality from farms and kava testing. Mr Koroijiuta stated that it was fulfilling to discuss the kava testing procedures and results with those that are actually involved in the planting of kava.
“It was rewarding to effectively contribute to discussions on improving the quality of kava for local consumption and exports. As a member of the FNKTC, it was also pleasing to hear directly from the farmers on the issues that they face in producing kava that meets the required export standards and regulatory requirements,” he said.