Samoa Koko Industry welcomes new executives

The Samoa Koko Industry Association (SKIA) welcomed its new executive committee at its annual general meeting convened last Thursday at the Lava Hotel conference room.

This 2021 annual general meeting covered the chairman’s report and SKIA audited financials for its operations in 2019 and 2020 due to state of emergency restrictions on public gatherings last year, consequently the association being unable to hold its A.G.M. as scheduled.

Outgoing SKIA Chairman Mulitalo Saena Penaia presented his Chairman’s report that detailed the operations of SKIA over the 2019-2020 period.

In his report, Mulitalo informed the members on the delay of SKIA projects and activities due to the association’s inability to hold an AGM last year. 

He also made a presentation on SKIA upcoming events involving a Cocoa Coaching Course for SKIA members and other workshops to be held later this year.

Samoa Observer spoke to the new president Alo Kolone Vaai and he said that he is willing to continue the good work done by the former president for the better development the Koko industry in Samoa.

“We were discussing our financial transactions, and the financial reports for 2019 and 2020 because we didn’t have an A.G.M. last year, and also we discuss some update of the SCIDI Project as we are working on the phase three at the moment," he said.

"Phase 1 and 2 are complete including two nursery at Mulifanua and Maota in the big island of Savai'i and Phase 3 is focused on graphics.

“We continue to develop the koko industry and supply more koko to the community, growers and farmers to make sure that we are not shortage of supplies and have enough to help the economy not only our country but also farmers both individuals and commercial farmers.” 

The only issue that the new president says is a challenge is the cost of chemicals like fertilizers brought from overseas country to maintain the best quality of the koko plant to avoid diseases that destroy the koko plants.

The vision of SKIA is to develop a sustainable and wealth creating Samoan cocoa industry, that benefits both smallholders and commercial growers, and the domestic and export value chains that exist around them.

The association is keen to achieve this by building on the successes Samoa has had to date by learning from mistakes made, and by guiding Koko Samoa into a realistic and achievable future. 

If members of the public wish to learn more about the Samoa Koko Industry Association please contact the secretariat of the Samoa Chamber of Commerce Secretariat.

The SKIA Elected Committee Members for 2021-2022 are Chairman – Alo Kolone Va’ai, Vice Chair – Maoi’autele Amitonu Brigitta Fa’afiti-Lo Tam. Independent Farmer Representatives – Taupaū Alex Mikaele and James Faiumu. Upolu Farmers Association Representatives – Samoa Farmers Federated Incorporation. Savaii Farmers Association Representatives – Sosaiete Aufaifaatoaga Savaii. Koko Bean Processors – Savaii Koko and Wilex Samoa.

SKIA was established in 2018 with the support from the Samoa Cocoa Industry Development Initiative and New Zealand’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

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