Tongan coffee overcomes Cyclone to get to Pasifika

Tonga’s Tupuanga Coffee will be at Auckland’s Pasifika Festival from 24-25 March.

Emeline and Alipate Mafile’o with family at the Auckland Food Show last year.

The family owned company withstood the impact of Cyclone Gita and quickly got back on its feet afterwards.

“The coffee trees are rather resilient, and I can say despite leaning to one side has sustained the effects of the cyclone,” Mrs Mafile’o said.

Tupu’anga Coffee is an ethical trade coffee produced in Tonga, the owner’s social entrepreneurs Alipate and Emeline Mafile’o have been growing, harvesting and producing coffee in the Kingdom of Tonga since 2010.

“We were using a generator after the cyclone to keep our local customers well, although we had some roofing and wall damage to the factory we have already fixed these damages and now with the power on in our area we are working at full capacity although waiting on some of our staff to return to work,” she added.

Tupuanga Coffee will be in the Pacific Trade Invest (PTI) New Zealand’sPasifika Business Market located beside the Samoa Village at Western Springs stadium.

They will sell their 100% Arabica Tupu’anga Coffee, agricultural gluten-free vegetable crop chips Manioke (cassava), Kumala chips and their popular Pacific fushion products from the community café the infamous Lu-Sipi (taro leaves and Lamb) Pie.

“Tupu’anga Coffee supports Pacific development in the diaspora through Affirming Works a social enterprise who has been servicing the Auckland area for 17 years since 2001,” said Mrs Mafile’o.

Affirming Works believes it takes a whole village to raise a child and their sustainable approach to community development includes the building of strong Pacific indigenous eco-system of enterprises.

Emeline and Alipate Mafile’o are now based in the Kingdom of Tonga focusing on the product development of goods sold in the Community café’s the new products include Manioke, Kumala and Taro chips.  And some of their very own niche Tongan organic vanilla products.

Affirming Works has three community café’s in the Auckland area based a coffee kiosk at the Otahuhu interchange train and bus station called Fale Kofi translated in Tongan to mean “coffee house” and Community café’s in the Mangere Arts Centre and Mt Roskill Youth Zone.

All these social enterprises work with Pacific youth to develop our community through programmes but also promote and sell Pacific products that include the Tongan-made Tupu’anga Coffee.

A new aid agency has been set up to help with the rebuild in Tonga after Cyclone Gita damaged homes and left thousands without power on February 13th.

Affirming Works (AW), who has been providing mentoring services to Pacific communities in New Zealand and Tonga for more than 15 years is leading the charge to unite, collaborate and rebuild Tonga through a new initiative called #TAGTONGA.

PTI NZ will also be fundraising for the Tonga’s Relief Effort in the Pasifika Business Market.

For more information contact Ian Furlong, PTI Trade Development Manager on

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