Green Gold Kava is a second-time participant at the Pasifika Festival this year. Prior to his participation two years ago in 2016, his company had no exports to New Zealand says owner Praveen Narayan.

Green Gold Kava owner-exporter Praveen Narayan with Fiji’s Minister of Industry, Trade and Tourism after Green Gold won the Emerging Exporter of the Year award.

Since Pasifika 2016, Green Gold Kava exports have increased not just to New Zealand but also to other countries, notably the United States of America.

“It is a privilege and we are appreciative to Pacific Trade Invest (PTI) NZ for inviting Green Gold Kava for the ever-growing Pasifika festival. This will be our second visit,” Mr Narayan said.

Green Gold Kava, a Path to Market alumnus, was also part of the PTI NZ Deal by Science initiative, which is a partnership with the Food Science Department of the University of Otago. The initiative aims at applying scientific rigour to island food products to improve their shelf life, packaging and general consumer appeal.

Last year, the partnership produced two kava flavoured drinks that were well received by focus groups during taste tests. Mr Narayan told Pacific Periscope that Green Gold will showcase these flavours at this year’s Pasifika.

“We are delighted to showcase Fijian flavours in kava from our partnership with PTI NZ and Otago university in developing a kava drink infused with NZ and Pacific fruits,” he said.

Green Gold will also showcase its award-winning kava products “to the ever vibrant and wonderful people of NZ,” Mr Narayan added. Green Gold plans to sell product at discounted prices to encourage trials.

He is keen to trial the newly developed kava drinks to see the response from Kiwis and also plans to conduct a survey.

“After Tropical Cyclone Winston, we were really upbeat about the response from New Zealand but since we were received with open arms by the New Zealand community and were given a great chance to do business with our counterparts.

Mr Narayan acknowledged the role PTI NZ has been playing in the development of Green Gold’s exports.

“We are always appreciative of their open arms policy working with Team NZ and their other offices around the world. The Part to Market programme has enabled us to not only understand the NZ market but also about how markets work in general — it’s basically the whole package.

“This programme was like my Ph.D. in exporting, which no university would be able to give SME exporters around the Pacific. And this has greatly contributed to our growth.”

Green Gold Kava has been the recipient of the Fiji Prime Minister’s Emerging Exporter Award.

“I would like to welcome everyone with open arms at Pasifika,” he says.

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