Alliance Francaise has organized an exhibition for Kava which started last Friday and concluding this Thursday with the support of Cooperation Regionale, Kava World and Olsem Wanem.
Director of Alliance Francaise de Port Vila George Cumbo said that he wanted to place kava on the pedestal it deserved by portraying it in different ways.
“Because I was thinking is in the middle of everything in Vanuatu and there is no exhibition or move so it is a way for us to use it as art, photo painting and we try to mix with the people who are trying to sell kava.”
“It’s a way to celebrate kava and also to recognize that kava use to belong to custom only but and now it’s like wine for friends.”
Mr. Cumbo mentioned that there is a lot to see and the public is welcome to purchase what’s available or simply admire what is on display.
“If you see outside the building there is a tree poem about kava one is a French poet and another is a song by local musician titled ‘Kava you ready’ and the last is a poem about kava by Paul Taro, called ‘the Soul of Kava’”, he said.
The celebration of Kava in Port Vila couldn’t have come at a better time since the decision was made by the Codex Alimentarius to declare kava as a food last month which Mr. Cumbo was made aware of by Kava specialist Dr. Vincent Lebot.
“In fact, last week we had a conference about Kava done by Vincent Lebot and he explained the new category.”
Dr. Lebot touched on the decision by the food authority and what it would mean for farmers in the country, stating that a sense of security for kava international demand and an opportunity for local farmers was borne out of the decision.
“This is really good for farmers in Vanuatu because it is going to open new markets and secure present markets regionally as high quality non-alcoholic beverage but also consumers in New Caledonia and now we have an extended market in the US as well.”
The kava doc further stated that if Vanuatu plays it cards right, kava could be a conducive commercial product with numerous uses.
“This is really good news for farmers but also the private sector who can now promote kava just like coffee or tea, if the private sector leads the industry wisely they could develop new products for the expanding market and therefore this could be a big contribution to the local industry.”
While kava farmers look pass the closed borders for revenue opportunities, meanwhile within the borders and on the last day of the celebration of kava, the brown gold will be served at Alliance Francaise to mark the end of exhibition on the day.
An agreement has been signed between the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Forestry, Fisheries and Biosecurity (MALFFB) and the Vanuatu Agriculture College (VAC) for the production of kava seedlings.
The agreement was signed by the Director General for MALFFB, Moses Amos and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of VAC, Peter Napwatt, after the second kava forum recently on Santo.
Under the agreement, VAC is obliged to produce over 23,000 kava seedlings at a value of VT4 Million to supply to farmers who are interested. DARD will purchase kava seedlings at VT170, considering factors of production and the selling price to farmers will be VT50 per seedling.
The Director for the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (DARD), Antoine Ravo, said DARD has signed several agreements with private companies under the Public Private Partnership (PPP) policy directive of MALFFB to ensure sufficient supply of kava planting materials are available to farmers.
Many farmers were enquiring on where they could access kava seedlings and cuttings.
“Before interested farmers have access to kava seedlings from VAC, DARD officers will visit the nursery to ensure quality seedlings and the plants are healthy and performing well when planted out in the field.
“We want to receive positive feedback from farmers to maintain the relationship between government and private sector, in this case VAC.
“The VAC students could come up with such initiative to work with the government in their projects when they return home.
“Beleru farm on Santo provides kava cuttings to farmers around Sanma Province. In 2020, more initiatives and agreements will be signed with farmers and especially established farmers’ association who can come forward and indicate their interest in working with MALFFB.
“Apart from kava, MALFFB through DARD will be working with interested farmers of key crops or specific crops like vanilla, pepper, coffee, cacao and other crops to develop each crop through partnership.
“Any interested farmers’ association should notify DARD and DARD officers will do an inspection on farm before an agreement could be reached to further develop identified crops under the jurisdiction of DARD,” Director Ravo said.
As a beneficiary of the partnership agreement, CEO Napwatt encouraged farmers and parents of young people on Santo to increase the number of young people attending the College.
He stated, “This College should enrol more students from Santo. In 2018, top on the list were students from PENAMA Province.
“This year, many students from TAFEA province were enrolled. Today, you may think Santo has a huge land mass but one day you will need to manage your resources and population growth and you need to know what to do to manage those resources.
CEO Napwatt added, “The signed agreement, could become a joint venture between two to ten famers around Santo.
“If a farmer produces 1 million seedlings a year, selling at VT150 per seedling, you will make a total of VT150 million a year and that is a lot of money.
“I encourage more young people from Santo to enrol at VAC next year 2019.
VAC CEO Napwatt said, “Now that the agreement has been signed, VAC will establish kava nurseries to gather for the number required by MALFFB.”
The DG for MALFFB acknowledged VAC for taking up the initiative to work with the government.
DG Amos said, “The government has subsidised the cost of kava seedling so VT50 is a reasonable amount that I believe most of you will afford.
“A lot of discussions and dialogue on issues surrounding kava industry were raised during the second kava forum and now it is time to work.
“The Government through the leadership of MALFFB Minister, ensures that there should not be any excuse of no access to kava seedlings.
As I was delivering some products to Paris Shopping Duty Free shop in Port Vila, I stumbled across a new product produced in Australia 🇦🇺 using Vanuatu Kava.
Nice packaging, clear indications.. was intrigued as I had never heard of it before..
Ingrid Festa gave me two tablets for me to try. The owner told me that her daughter tried it and that it was good as she could drink and wasn’t inclined to spit, as it is often the case with fresh kava in Vanuatu 🇻🇺.
In the afternoon, as we were testing the “American “ kava , we decided to have a go at this one too😂😂😂
The kava tablet boiled in the shell, giving a yellowish foam on top of the shell 😬😬
Taste is special- nothing like kava, and rather strange , but maybe because we were (naively) expecting to get a drink very similar to fresh kava.
I am not sure that it will appeal to our seasoned kava drinkers, but it may appeal to new customers: easy to prepare anywhere etc..
It is great to see innovation like this. This is how we are going to touch a wider base of consumers and kava lovers ❤️👍.
We forwarded earlier information about PAcific Kava Roots , à kava prepared with green kava ( fresh froozen) and bottled in New Zealand for the US Market.
This product is the baby of years of trials by a well known American kava lover and importer , Mr. Mike Munsell, owner of Monsoon Beverage LLC and of the Kalm with Kava Company.
We had the chance – thanks to Slade Slimkins- to try and taste the product yesterday. Slade, Jimmy ans myself.
We had purchased a 1.5 liters of fresh kava at red light bladiniere for the tasting😁, to compare.
Of course, we were able to tell one from another, but a very interesting product, not only because of its long shelf life but also because it is very close to fresh kava taste.
There is no bitterness in the taste or smell. Taste is still very earthy. Strenght seems good : we only had each an 100 ml shell (….) , the bottle being 250ml. With a full bottle , am sure the consumer will get the looked after relaxing effect, as I was feeling relaxed and my mouth half numb …
Congratulation once again to the développer, and it will be great to see something like this being manufactured here, with bottle labeled with the different islands and varieties 😊😊❤️👍
Interesting interview with Doc Vince 04:58; concerns that this traditional crop will become so popular that other parts of the world will start cultivating it pushing out local growers in the Pacific, it’s a delicate balance.
Kava (Piper methysticum) is a plant native to the Polynesian islands that people there have used in a calming drink of the same name in religious and cultural rituals for thousands of years. The tradition of cultivating kava and drinking it during important gatherings is a cultural cornerstone shared throughout much of Polynesia, although the specific customs—and the strains of kava—vary from island to island. Over the past few decades, kava has been gaining interest outside of the islands for its pain-relief and anti-anxiety properties as a potentially attractive alternative to drugs like opioids and benzodiazepines because kavalactones, the molecules of medicinal interest in kava, use slightly different mechanisms to affect the central nervous system and appear to be non-addictive. Kava bars have been springing up around the United States, kava supplements and teas lining the shelves at stores like Walmart, and sports figures in need of safe pain relief are touting its benefits.
This growing usage suggests that there would be a sizeable market for kavalactone-based medical therapies, but there are roadblocks to development: for one, kava is hard to cultivate, especially outside of the tropics. Kava takes years to reach maturity and, as a domesticated species that no longer produces seeds, it can only be propagated using cuttings. This can make it difficult for researchers to get a large enough quantity of kavalactones for investigations or clinical trials.
Now, research from Whitehead Institute member and MIT associate professor of biology Jing-Ke Weng and postdoc Tomáš Pluskal, published online in Nature Plants July 22, describes a way to solve that problem, as well as to create kavalactone variants not found in nature that may be more effective or safer as therapeutics.
“We’re combining historical knowledge of this plant’s medicinal properties, established through centuries of traditional usage, with modern research tools in order to potentially develop new drugs,” Pluskal says.
Weng’s lab has shown that if researchers figure out the genes behind a desirable natural molecule—in this case, kavalactones—they can clone those genes, insert them into species like yeast or bacteria that grow quickly and are easier to maintain in a variety of environments than a temperamental tropical plant, and then get these microbial bio-factories to mass produce the molecule. In order to achieve this, first Weng and Pluskal had to solve a complicated puzzle: How does kava produce kavalactones? There is no direct kavalactone gene; complex metabolites like kavalactones are created through a series of steps using intermediate molecules. Cells can combine these intermediates, snip out parts of them, and add bits onto them to create the final molecule—most of which is done with the help of enzymes, cells’ chemical reaction catalysts. So, in order to recreate kavalactone production, the researchers had to identify the complete pathway plants use to synthesize it, including the genes for all of the enzymes involved.
The researchers could not use genetic sequencing or common gene editing tools to identify the enzymes because the kava genome is huge; it has 130 chromosomes compared to humans’ 46. Instead they turned to other methods, including sequencing the plant’s RNA to survey the genes expressed, to identify the biosynthetic pathway for kavalactones.
“It’s like you have a lot of Lego pieces scattered on the floor,” Weng says, “and you have to find the ones that fit together to build a certain object.”
Weng and Pluskal had a good starting point: They recognized that kavalactones had a similar structural backbone to chalcones, metabolites shared by all land plants. They hypothesized that one of the enzymes involved in producing kavalactones must be related to the one involved in producing chalcones, chalcone synthase (CHS). They looked for genes encoding similar enzymes and found two synthases that had evolved from an older CHS gene. These synthases, which they call PmSPS1 and PmSPS2, help to shape the basic scaffolding of kavalactones molecules.
Then, with some trial and error, Pluskal found the genes encoding a number of the tailoring enzymes that modify and add to the molecules’ backbone to create a variety of specific kavalactones. In order to test that he had identified the right enzymes, Pluskal cloned the relevant genes and confirmed that the enzymes they encode produced the expected molecules. The team also identified key enzymes in the biosynthetic pathway of flavokavains, molecules in kava that are structurally related to kavalactones and have been shown in studies to have anti-cancer properties.
Once the researchers had their kavalactone genes, they inserted them into bacteria and yeast to begin producing the molecules. This proof of concept for their microbial bio-factory model demonstrated that using microbes could provide a more efficient and scalable production vehicle for kavalactones. The model could also allow for the production of novel molecules engineered by combining kava genes with other genes so the microbes would produce modified kavalactones. This could allow researchers to optimize the molecules for efficiency and safety as therapeutics.
“There’s a very urgent need for therapies to treat mental disorders, and for safer pain relief options,” Weng says. “Our model eliminates several of the bottlenecks in drug development from plants by increasing access to natural medicinal molecules and allowing for the creation of new-to-nature molecules.”
Kava is only one of many plants around the world containing unique molecules that could be of great medicinal value. Weng and Pluskal hope that their model—combining the use of drug discovery from plants used in traditional medicine, genomics, synthetic biology, and microbial mass production—will be used to better harness the great diversity of plant chemistry around the world in order to help patients in need.
More information: Tomáš Pluskal et al. The biosynthetic origin of psychoactive kavalactones in kava, Nature Plants (2019). DOI: 10.1038/s41477-019-0474-0
Tanoa fa’iva (kava bowl) are used in the preparation and serving of a beverage made from the roots of the kava plant. The preparation and serving of ‘ava (kava) is an art form in itself. The kava ceremony has great significance in South Pacific culture.
Custom Tanoas makes Acacia wood Tanoas in Thailand. Acacia wood has been around since for thousands of years. The durable properties and beauty of the flowing wood grains led to its use in furniture construction and luxury items.Custom Tanoas uses fully dried out Acacia wood slats and hand assembles the bowls, creating pieces that are highly unlikely to crack over years of use. The designs are inspired by traditional south pacific ceremonial bowls. These bowls are a perfect centerpiece for Kava circles and will only become more beautiful with years of use.
Sometimes the most simple and elegant solution to a problem has actually been known for a very long time. We saw an example of this last year in the University of Minnesota’s pancreatic cancer drug, derived from the traditional Chinese tea ingredient known as the Thunder God Vine. This year, University of Minnesota researchers explore another ancient plant’s capacity to solve modern-day problems.
The plant in question is formally named Piper methysticum, though many know it as kava. Kava roots are a common ingredient in traditional beverages on the islands of the South Pacific like Vanuatu, Fiji, and Western Samoa. Kava has been linked previously to the prevention and treatment of lung cancer, and with good reason: although smoking rates in the South Pacific islands are comparable to those of the United States, lung cancer rates are 90 to 95 percent lower in the islands.
(Ground kava root, ready to be mixed with water to create a traditional South Pacific beverage. Image courtesy Wikimedia Commons and Ib0ga)
The reason kava hasn’t grown immensely popular as a cancer combatant is because one of the occasional side effects of its derivatives is liver damage. This slowed the spread of kava to the point where today’s commercially available kava supplements are diluted enough so that they won’t cause liver damage, but the trade-off is that they’re not potent enough to do much in the way of cancer.
“I wouldn’t recommend using kava supplements on the market today with the hopes of receiving cancer prevention benefits,” says Chengguo Xing, Ph.D., an associate professor of medicinal chemistry at the University of Minnesota College of Pharmacy in a UMN press release. “Although occasional use of currently available kava supplements is likely to have a low risk of liver injury, they may not safely provide the intended chemopreventative benefits.”
Xing and his fellow bioresearchers at University of Minnesota have been looking into the reasons why the kava root has these positive and negative effects, which previously were not very well understood. Their lab work allowed them to distinguish which compounds had medicinal potential and which were potentially harmful, and designed a drug with only the beneficial properties. In clinical trials with mice, this drug prevented the formation of 99 percent of lung cancer tumors even in the presence of tobacco carcinogens. This is an unprecedented rate of success in the field and the team eagerly moves toward human trials.
The President of the Vanuatu Liberal Movement and same time Minister of Finance, Gaetan Pikioune, has revealed that a Chinese businessman is selling powder kava in China for Vt36,000 per kilo.
He made the revelation during the official opening of his Party Congress at his nakamal in Luganville, Santo.
Minister Pikioune told congress delegates that during his recent official visit to China, he took one kilo of a powder kava with him to share with his hosts.
He was told that a Chinese businessman is selling Vanuatu dried kava in Beijing. He said they asked the Chinese man to buy a kilo packet of powder kava only to be told that the price for a kilo of the powder kava from Vanuatu is Vt36,000 per packet.
Mr. Pikioune told delegates at the party congress that such issues must be addressed because this is unfair to Vanuatu kava famers as well as exporters and the country as a whole.
“The price of our green gold has soared in China, leaving farmers in Vanuatu to dwell on lower market prices, and losing out,” said Minister Pikioune.
China food mechanical scale is mostly used to weigh kava at Anamburu Kava market. These iron spring scales range from 10 Kg to 20 Kg depending on the sellers preference and how they manage their kava products according to the buyers market choice from whole green kava roots to kava chips.
Furthermore it is also known that different scales are used in different kava market enterprises. The real question is; given different types of scales used, does it make a huge difference to the current market quantity of each kava products?
According to most farmers and sellers response, it does make a huge impact to the sales when you use two different sets of scales to weigh the same given kava product.
DISTRIBUTION BLONG DISEASE: Raon long wol, mo long Pacific hemi kat long Cook Islands, Tahiti, Fiji, Palau, Samoa, Tonga mo yumi long Vanuatu.
OL FRENS BLONG DISEASE: Hemi wan vaeres we i kat plante fren blem olsem pumpkin, banana, watermelon, capsicum, tobacco, passion fruit, peanuts mo ol nara legumes blong yumi olsem snake beans mo plante moa.
OL SYMPTOMS MO LAEF CYCLE: Ol fes saen hemi yellow or waet spots long ol yang leafs. Hemia oli singaotem mosaic symptom mo hemi mekem leaf hemi deform moa no save grow gud.
Spos yu katem aot stem blong kava wetem ol yellow or waet spot leafs ia, bai yu luk ol brown lines olsem ol smol smol holes insaed long ol stem. Hemia hemi stat blong mekem stem ia i kam blak, sopsop moa roten insaed.
HOW NAO IA HEMI SPREAD; I kat two weis we vaeres ia hemi save spread lem;
Wan hemi ol smol smol betbet nem blong olgeta hemi Alphids (Image 3) taem oli kakai ol plants we i infected finis oli end up blong passem i ko long ol nara plants wetem ol parts blong maot blong olgeta.
Moa tu, spos yu breedem bakeken ol mama stem blong kava we hemi bin kasem vaeres ia bai hemi save spreadem disease ia bakeken long ol new kava growths.
WANEM NAO IMPACT BLEM? Hemia hemi wan serious disease long kantri blong yumi mo hemi kat wan high kava-loss reputaesen finis long ol nara kantris raon long yumi finis.
WANEM YUMI MAS MEKEM? Hemi impoten blong yumi mas stap inspectem gud oltaem kava planteisen blong yumi mo lukaot from ol early symptoms olsem ol yellow mo waet yang leafs mo ol stem we i stat blong roten.
HOW NAO YUMI SAVE MANAGEM? CULTURAL CONTROL hemi wan wei nomo we i save managem die back.
OL STEPS BLONG FOLEM BIFO YU PLANT:
Planem kava kolosap long ol bigfala tree, kraon hemi mas rich mo fertile gud wetem ol organic matta from nomo se ol kava crops we hemi healthy oli kat moa chance blong resistem moafitem aot infection ia.
Yumi mas usum ol healthy planting materiels nomo! Tabu blong usum ol cuttings blong ol disease plants, no matta spos hemi luk healti i stap, hemi wan bigfala risk tumas spos yu tekem disisen ia. Yumi mas usum ol cuttings blong ol plantation we oli neva showem eni symptoms blong disease ia.
Mek sua se yu kat ol helti nursery cuttings oltaem mo checkem gud olgeta spos oli nokat eni saen blong disease ia bifo yu tekem olgeta i ko long bigfala planteisen. Mo tu no forgetem blong destroyem eni disease plants we yu save faenem.
OL STEPS BLONG FOLEM TAEM YU PLANT:
Hemi impotent blong yumi mas stap removem aot ol weed oltaem long planteisen blong yumi.
Folem tradisenel planting method blong yumi olsem planem ol nara crops weh hemi no fren blong dieback disease long medel blong wan wan kava roots blong yu. Sam long ol dieback resistant crops ia hemi: taro, cabbage, banana, manioc, lemon, pawpaw, sugarcane mo yam.
Taem yu prunem kava crops blong yu, mek sua se yu brekem stem antap long fes node, mo tabu blong yusum wan naef from naef hemi esi blong spreadem vaeres. Kolectem eni stem or leaf mo tekem aot lo planteisen mo afta yu berem or bonem long faea. Plis andastanem se pruning tecnic ia hemi wok gud wetem ol kava we i kat 1 yia i ko antap nomo, hemia we hemi yang tumas yu mas rootem aot nomo long karen mo replacem wetem wan niu helti cutting.
OL STEPS BLONG TEKEM AFTA HAFEST : Kolektem mo ponem ol leafs, stems mo ol pispis toti ol baot.
WANEM NAO SAMFALA KEMIKEL CONTROL: Kemikel control hemi nogud blong disease ia mo i nokat eni kemikel we save killem disease ia long ol infected kava plants blong yumi
The Director General of the Ministry of Trade Commerce and Tourism Mr Roy Mickey Joy revealed that the market of Vanuatu Kava in New Caledonia is huge and that the existing kava industry in Vanuatu is low.
In relation with the Trade Agreement between the Prime Minister Charlot Salwai and the President of the Government of the New Caledonia Mr Philipe Germain, the DG of TCT continues to emphasize on the fact that the international demand of Vanuatu Kava to New Caledonia is huge and strongly urged and encourage Vanuatu kava farmers to re consider planting more kava for the new market in the New Caledonia.
“There are 6,000 Ni- Vans living in New Caledonia and there are so many kava bars in Noumea and New Caledonia. all well organized, well run and that need Vanuatu Kava, which the Prime Minister’s delegation was very impressed with,” Mr. Joy and the President of the Vanuatu Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI ) Shaun Gilchrist conveyed on Buzz FM 96 yesterday Monday 25th February.
Read more in todays Daily Post Issue 5648 . DAILYPOST.VU
Mr. Roy was also awarded the Lini Day award on Thursday 21st February last week to commemorate late Father Walta Lini. He was being acknowledge for his achievement of pushing forward the potential International market of Vanuatu Kava.
‘On September 7th 2016 in the Embassy of the Republic of Vanuatu in Brussels, HE Ambassador Joy and his Team along with the representatives of the of the ACP‐EU TBT Programme Management Unit met to receive the findings and the presentation of the work of a Legal Expert who has recently been engaged and Commissioned by the TBT PMU on behalf of the Government of Vanuatu to conduct and carry out an in depth technical assessment and evaluation on the state of play of Kava in Vanuatu..,
Vanuatu and New Caledonia signed on Wednesday, February 13th, a commercial agreement project! It will allow New Caledonia and Vanuatu to increase their trade exchanges in a complementary way. Kava, among other Vanuatu local products, should thus be able to be more easily exported. This reconciliation testifies to Vanuatu’s economic dynamism.
With the rapid change of this wet and cool weather and after the come down of TC Oma, the nation is most likely to get caught with cold and flu symptoms along with other complex viruses.
Kava is known to be an effective natural cold and flue remedy for adults . It not only helps eliminate the cold & flue viruses but it helps with the breathing interaction between the lungs as a result allows the patient to sleep well during the night.
Just two shells of good kava for 100 vt and you are sweet !