Early this month, Pacific Trade Invest (P.T.I) Australia, working in collaboration with the Samoa Chamber of Commerce, was in Samoa leading a buyer delegation.
As part of their programme they visited the Samoan Coconut Cluster to see firsthand their operations. Samoa Coconut Cluster Limited is the company behind the Samoa Heritage brand of raw organic virgin coconut oil (V.C.O).
Founded in 2013 by Edwin Tamasese, Alo Kolone Vaai and Gasu Isaako Aipovi, the company has grown to a cooperative group of over 200 registered farmers and processors working with the central oil processing facility based at Vaitele.
P.T.I Australia began working with the Samoan Coconut Cluster in 2016 providing essential export development support, they also assisted developing product packaging and labels and accessing jars for the Samoan Coconut Clusters first international shipment of V.C.O to New Zealand.
“We are thankful for the support P.T.I Australia has provided the Samoan Coconut Cluster it’s enabled us to confidently enter the international market, which more importantly is now providing a sustainable income for our farmers and their families that we intend to grow,” Mr. Tamasese.
Mona Mato, Manager Export Services, P.T.I Australia said he was impressed by the facilities.
“Edwin and the team have a fantastic facility, it’s great to have this opportunity to see how the V.C.O is made, it’s PTI Australia’s mandate from the Pacific Island Forum Secretariat to help Samoan exporters.
The flow on effect of the Samoan Coconut Clusters export success to Samoan farmers, their families and communities is immense.”
P.T.I Australia is an agency of the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat.
They work with export and investment ready Pacific Island business establishing opportunities in international markets with a focus on Australia.