‘Market for kava expands’

Kava is currently classifi ed as a drug under the Customs (Prohibited Imports) Regulations 1956 (PI Regulations). Picture: ELIKI NUKUTABU

Pacific Islands kava growers, processors and exporters are expected to benefit from the ability to export kava to Australia as the market for kava expands, states a consultation paper by the Office of Drug Control.

Australia is reviewing regulations that will allow commercial importation of kava into the country.

“It is expected that a range of Australian businesses will be involved in the commercial importation and retailing of kava,” states the paper.

“These businesses may include but are not restricted to health food stores, stores focused on retailing products from the Pacific Islands, general grocery stores, businesses that specifically retail kava or other business models that may retail kava alongside other products such as restaurants or bars.”

Businesses may also retail kava online, states the paper.

“Other businesses that may benefit from the commercial importation are importers, freight and Customs brokers.”

The ODC consultation paper states market behaviour and kava consumption trends resulting from the commercial importation pilot may influence government decisions concerning future requirements for regulating the importation of kava into Australia.

People who are interested in importing kava for commercial purposes, Pacific Islanders or indigenous community leaders, health specialists, governments and law enforcement agencies have been urged to make submissions.

All submissions provided through this consultation process will be examined before a final decision is made later this year.

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