Vanuatu is a large archipelago of 83 (or more) islands, located north east of New Caledonia, (latitude 17.7500° S, longtitude 168.3000° E). Our family first visited Vanuatu in 2010 and we were hooked with so many islands to explore, we had to return the following year.
We can safely describe our family as being fairly resourceful and enjoy re-cycling, up-cycling and re-purposing around our home. We had sourced new and used but useful materials to take to a number of schools on our first Vanuatu visit. However, we felt that the small donations we made on that first visit were simply not enough. This is when the brainstorming began. How to help in a sustainable and tangible way.
The answer was obvious, sell Vanuatu products and give back a portion of any profits – but what? Why not something that we had consumed every day on our Vanuatu adventures – coconut oil.
This was the beginning of our journey – importing quality Virgin Coconut Oil to New Zealand. Inviting New Zealanders to a taste sensation of Vanuatu, at the same time increasing incomes for rural farmers of Vanuatu. Soon our product range expanded.
Around the same time as our first visit to Vanuatu, we had become regular consumers of coconut oil as a cooking oil, and had been frustrated by the huge variation in quality, prices and tastes of oils available in New Zealand. After extensive searching throughout Vanuatu, we were introduced to a great tasting Virgin Coconut Oil that was “fairly traded”, organic and delicious – this was the piece in the puzzle we had been searching for.
As relationships were formed in Vanuatu, we visited the farmers and compared their efforts required to produce coconut oil from the traditional copra method and the process used by our suppliers. We were impressed to see World Vision working alongside farmers, supporting them in their new supply chain. Together with our supplier, the farmers are supplying a top quality raw product for the production of a top quality Virgin Coconut Oil for your consumption.
And now of course, the range that we can offer from the Lav Kokonas stables is expanding all the time, as we discover more Pacific delights for New Zealand consumers.