23 Dec 2013

Samoa business aims to get more local food into restaurants

3:11 pm on 23 December 2013

Samoa's Women in Business Development is establishing what it calls a Farm to Table programme to link small organic farmers with local hotels and restaurants, and encourage the use of local produce.

Spokesperson, Faumuina Tafuna'i, says it is working with well-known Pacific chef Robert Oliver to find out what produce restaurants need, what the most popular produts are and develop a consistent supply system.

She says the business grouping is also working with farmers to help them develop their products, and will eventually develop youth-specific farm projects.

"Most restaurants and hotels have said to use they would like to use local - but they find it very difficult to get the supply. So the first phase is developing that market, and then the second phase will actually be working with youth to create youth farm projects, and then they will be part of the supply chain."

Faumuina Tafuna'i says Samoa currently imports about 80 percent of its produce.

She says it hopes the programme will also boost tourism, as visitors will eventually be able to experience all locally sourced Samoan cuisine.