Fairtrade ANZ is proud to announce that the Savaii Coconut Farmers Association, a young organisation with a small membership, has recently achieved Fairtrade certification. This means that the group meets with Fairtrade Standards of social and environmental performance, as well as business accountability, and transparency.
The Savaii Coconut Farmers Association worked towards its certification for less than a year and reached this milestone in early September, becoming the first producer organisation in Samoa to be Fairtrade Certified. The Savai'i based association adopted Fairtrade certification as a business strategy to increase members' income through its coconut for processing supply business.
Supported by its local buyer Krissy Co, the kiwi ice cream company Nice Blocks and Fairtrade ANZ, the organisation aims to contribute to the recovery of the coconut cream industry in Samoa, which has declined by 50% in the last 10 years. "With the help of Fairtrade supporters and consumers, this small business could represent a step forward towards tipping the balance between Samoa's imports and exports, which the most recent figures state are SAT$78 million of main exports and SAT$792 million of main imports," says Sandra Mendez, Fairtrade ANZ's producer support officer.
Fairtrade ANZ will continue to work with the group to strengthen its business. "We are very happy about the certification and grateful for all the training that Fairtrade ANZ gave us. The next step is to improve the business and sales, so we can receive similar benefits to the ones that Fairtrade brings to other cooperatives in places like Fiji and Costa Rica," says Perise Mulifusi, secretary of the Savai'i Coconuts Farmers Association.