Life at the Fugalei market, vendors share their stories

Selling fruits and vegetables at the Fugalei market is making a difference in the lives of ordinary Samoans.

But they say their income totally depends on customer demand.

The Samoa Observer did interviews recently with a number of the farmers to find out how much money they generate on a daily basis, and what are some of their basic expenses.

Tagi Eteuati, 57, from the village of Papa Sataua in Savai’i travels to Upolu to sell his sacks of taro.

This time around he brought 12 bags and was selling 15 taros for $20 tala.

“I have 12 sacks of taro from Savai'i that I come with but some taro have been sold on my way to Apia,” he said.

Tagi estimates that he would make $800 tala from the sale of all his taro bags, before returning to the big island. 

For 32-year-old Teresa Afamasaga from Solosolo village on Upolu, her focus is on pumpkin and other vegetables. 

“I sell vegetables at the market and I earn a lot from it,” she said.

On a good day, Teresa can make $300, but that can drop to $100 or $150 on an ordinary day. 

“The earning depends on the customers,” she said.

Ana Skelton, 45, of Aleisa said she spends the whole day selling her vegetables, fruits and other items.

Yesterday was a good day.

"Most of my goods have sold out this morning,” she said.

On a good day, she can make about $600 tala from her sales.

Fifty-one year-old Lio Ioapo of Tuanai said he has a cocoa beans plantation and he sells vegetables and fruit in the local market. 

Him and his wife Rasela earn $100 tala a day each.

“What I sell at the market like vegetables and fruits can meet my family's needs such as food, and money to put my children in school,” he added.

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