TNYC RESULT Project have work to develop export market for virgin coconut oil. The project is in it’s third year span throughout this period the TNYC learning curves have increase a lot not only in business development, but also in marketing development locally and internationally. To this extend the business arm have down size it’s production site last year so its can accommodate those learning in the export market contract and developing of the local market. Now in 2017 production is back on track but this time its just not coconut oil only but have also diversify products for the local market with producing coconut milk. TNYC RESULT have also add vanilla this year as their second organic commodities for the business arm.
“Yes we had a set back when production stop but that just made us see things more clearly” said Production Controller, Filohivalu “the great things of our set back we came to see that coconut milk is a production that is needed in the Tongan community and yes we are delivering coconut milk to stores for all to buy”.
The remerging of the production come in a great time when TNYC is just about to go in to the Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) certification.
On September 1st TNYC warehouse was inspected for the first time by the HACCP officer and while all was well there are still work to do before THYC have a thump up from HACCP Inspection.
“We still have our work to do before we get out HACCP certification and we are willing to take it on cause it will be worthfit” said production controller
The organic certified program have been running for 7 years now with 700+ certified organic farmer all over Tonga.
This program has started to address concerns of the youth of Tonga on Climate Changes issues, Environment Conservation, economic development and Healthy Living, practicing nature way or go organic is the way to address these concerns. Positive comments from one of the grower, Sateki a certified organic farm “There is no question that if we need a healthy food system we need to grow our food organically”.
In the past few year TNYC have actively collect coconut from certified grower process these into virgin coconut oil and have sell this locally as well as export to international market such as New Zealand, U.S and Australia. It is very clear from this last few year that organic certification is not just the requirement for the export market but very importantly the HACCP (Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points) certification is also needed to market such as U.S, EU, Japan, Australia and New Zealand .
TNYC with the help from Ministry of Labor and Commerce through the PHAMA (Pacific Horticultural & Agricultural Market Access Program) a DFAT funded program have taken step to help business and growers alike to pay for the HACCP certification to enable grower and business to export their product to the international market.
Last Thursday TNYC have conducted a HACCP preliminary training for staff in the main office as well as the production team in the warehouse in Sopu (where virgin coconut oil, vanilla and coconut milk is being process) to familiarized staff to the HACCP standard as well as upgrading the establishment before the inspection is done. The training will continue on a weekly basis from now on so that organic product can be export.
Tonga National Youth Congress, Disaster Reduction Risk and Environmental Division (D.R.R and Environment division) have started a new project ‘Safe Drinking Water for children’. The project started out with the D.R.R team conducting a survey with primary school surrounding the Nuku’alofa district. There are 13 primary schools in the Nuku’alofa area, the result from the survey was devastating for with these 13 school only one school clear their water tank twice are year.
“When we were set out to do the program as part of the community services of the organization with clean water for drinking we didn’t expect this result” said D.R.R officer Mosese Siuta, “clean water for drinking for our children
Now the D.R.R & Environmental division is putting on his new services out to these school and clean their water tank so that students may have clean drinking water.
“We are grateful that TNYC have come to help us in making sure that we have safe drinking water” said Hofoa principal “This is a much need service for our children every young child have the right to clean, safe, drinking water the most basic need for all human being.
“Our safe drinking water for children project have started with the primary school of Hofoa” said Mosese Siuta “The reason we started with Hofoa primary school is because they have a small water tank. Yes, we have done it and now students at Hofoa primary school now have access to clean and safe drinking water”
Safe Drinking Water for children project will begin with the Nuku’alofa area than from there to the western district as well as throughout Tongatapu than we will look at the secondary school’s water tank said Mosese Siuta and Mausa Halahala from TNYC DRR division.
The RESULT Project a OXFAM New Zealand partnership and MFAT funding program within Tonga National Youth Congress have entered a new level this year which is the working on the vanilla commodities. The RESULT project have focus in the last two years on developing the virgin coconut oil business. Starting with working with the grower, harvesting and selling their coconut to the YES Unit and to the market the export and the local. There has been some success and there is still area to improve on production and quality but overall it has been proven that is starting to generate incomes to benefit communities, employ young people and the capacity of production to meet the demand of the export market as well as the local market.
The vanilla commodity follow a slightly different approach from the Virgin Coconut Oil. The ICS has been working with the growers certifying their farm plot. And putting the grower into different cluster that of the coconut cluster and now the vanilla cluster. With the vanilla cluster the work started with the list of the certified vanilla grower given to the buyer and using the organic certified label and getting the buyer to buy for the organic international market prize. Starting from last years the organic vanilla grower cluster was very happy of the organic vanilla prize.
This year TNYC and RESULT project a playing two different roles TNYC organic certification unit still work with the grower and their vanilla in planting, growing and harvesting. TNYC RESULT business unit start to work with individual grower by buying the vanilla , do the curing process and negotiating a market for this grower.
This individual work enable the grower to set their own price on their products if they sell it green as well as setting up with TNYC a bonus system for when the buyer buys the dried vanilla bean.
TNYC is hoping to expand more with working with the vanilla grower especially the need for a lot of awareness for young women on the benefit from their backyard vanilla if they start planting and working with ICS on a more small cluster grower group and fast track their vanilla production so that the benefit will be sooner than later.