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Strategies For Enhancing Productivity And Income Of Coconut Farmers In Vanuatu

About 80% of the population of Vanuatu is living on traditional farming in which coconut is their main source of cash income. The island of Santo is the biggest producer of copra and its port (Luganville Port) will become the marketing centre of the country in the future in terms of exports. Copra processing is a very new technology in the country with the only crusher located in Luganville (Copra Oil Product of Vanuatu) on 24 hours operation producing on average 11,000 MT of crude oil per year. COPV is also crushing copra coming from Kiribati and Solomon Islands. There are five processing plants and product diversification is already taking place with products like perfumes, body oil and soaps, though copra continued to generate most of the foreign exchange in the country. Vanuatu Government has reviewed and restructured the coconut industry since 2003 with a new management team in the Vanuatu Commodities Marketing Board (VCMB). The future strategy of VCMB would be to work out a serious replanting program next year to ensure that processing plants get adequate supply.

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