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Fiji Time: 9:17 AM on Thursday 31 July

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Vanilla success for women

Salaseini Moceiwai
Saturday, January 26, 2013

VANILLA farming for a group of women in Cakaudrove is proving to be a good source of income since they embarked on the project four years ago.

Thanks to the Ministry of Women, the Tabuvakasuka Women's Group of Naidi Village received $4000 to set up the project in 2009.

Group president Leba Ligaiviu said five women spearheaded the project. They were given 100 vanilla plants each which they planted.

"Even though vanilla takes three to five years to mature, we still receive good income from it because this commodity is in high demand," Mrs Ligaiviu said.

"We usually sell 200 to 400 kilograms of vanilla beans to tourists, nearby resorts and hotels and the money we receive is able to put food on the table."

The group has also also ventured into other small-scale farming to cater for them.

"We do multi-cropping, we plant vegetables, dalo, cassava and yaqona," Mrs Ligaiviu said.

"Of the 100 plants, I harvested 30 plants through which I have earned more than $3500. I never thought I could earn this much money so fast."

Mrs Ligaiviu uses a manual method to process the vanilla.

She also produces virgin coconut oil with vanilla and vanilla ice block with coconut cream.

"We are grateful to the ministry for helping us to start the vanilla farm which I can confidently say will make us millionaires one day."


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