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Lovely local food

By PIPSO, The Fiji Times Online, 28 April 2017

April 28, 2017

Friday, April 21 saw the successful book launch of Colin Chung's cookbook, Kana Vinaka, at the University of the South Pacific's Oceania Centre. The Minister for Agriculture, Rural and Maritime Development and National Disaster Management Inia Seruiratu launched the book.

Mr Seruiratu praised Chef Colin for such an inspirational book that endeavours to promote local eating and cuisine and agribusiness.

He said: "The recipes in the book are made from produce grown by our local farmers and harvested by our fishermen.

"A considerable amount of our food is imported and this book provides innovative ways in which seasonal and local produce, which are easily available and affordable, can be used."

Echoing the sentiments of Mr Seruiratu, PIPSO's (Pacific Islands Private Sector Organisation) chief executive officer Mereia Volavola said: "A book like Kana Vinaka, promotes widely our local cuisine and use of locally grown and available produce, which are very nutritious.

"It is well known that our region is facing an NCD crisis, and it is initiatives like this that prompt us and remind us that we need to go back to traditional cuisine with a contemporary twist.

"PIPSO, as an organisation promoting and inspiring the growth of Pacific businesses, we are especially calling on people to support local farmers and agri-businesses."

PIPSO through its "Promoting Nutritious Food Systems in the Pacific Islands Project" in partnership with CTA (Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Co-operation) and IFAD (International Fund for Agricultural Development) provided event banners to assist Chef Colin, and book collaborator Greg Cornwall, to publicise the book, and the wider concepts around promoting and advocating the consumption of local produce, and contemporary island cuisine.

The "Promoting Nutritious Food Systems in the Pacific Islands Project is a four-year project covering seven Pacific Island countries — Kiribati, Fiji, Republic of the Marshall Islands, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga and Vanuatu — with lots of potential and opportunities for shared learning with the other Pacific Island countries. The project goal is to strengthen the capacity of the Pacific Island governments, farmer and private sector organisations, and sub-regional institutions to develop strategies and programs, as well as mobilise financing, that can effectively enable poor rural people to increase their access to nutritious and healthy food.

PIPSO, as a key project implementer, will invite and engage the private sector and sections of the community