Tourism and agriculture are two critical industries in many Pacific economies and strengthening linkages between the two will provide new income opportunities and growth for the value chain actors serving the tourism markets.
Linkages between agriculture and tourism not only potentially increase opportunities for domestic agriculture earnings, new markets and product development and therefore sustainable economic growth, but also offer opportunities to help develop visitor attractions and distinctive tourism destination brands through the creative use and marketing of local produce and production techniques.
High-quality food is critical to hotels, lodges and resorts, and sourcing a bigger part from local producers and processors can generate substantial gains and generate greater investment in local production. The challenges of shifting food-sourcing to local suppliers need to be addressed in a way that meets commercial needs and customer preferences and ensures compliance with food and safety requirement.
Equally critical are the policy frameworks which promote linkages between agriculture, tourism and trade sectors. The trade policy environment should be more favourable to the private sector and investment, while supporting local entrepreneurs and SMEs through appropriate measures that address import substitution, notably in the form of tariff and non-tariff barriers.
Since 2014, CTA, PIPSO and key partners in the Pacific region have been highlighting the potential of tourism markets for local farmers and other value chain actors.
CTA, PIPSO and SPC organised a First Pacific Agribusiness Forum, held on 1-3 July 2015 in Denarau, Fiji, as part of the Pacific Agritourism Week which recommended policy actions at national and regional level to promote local sourcing by the hospitality sector. This was followed in by the Second Pacific Agribusiness Forum held in Apia, Samoa from 29 August to 1 September 2016, organised with the additional support of IFAD and SPTO, which emphasised the various roles of value chain actors in enabling linkages between agriculture, tourism and health. Two consultative national Policy setting workshops were organised in Vanuatu and 1st Agritourism Festival which led to concrete policy measures. Private and public partnerships are being developed aimed at increasing investment in tourism markets through chain efficiency. Fundraising proposals have been developed by those governments with PIPSO, CTA and IFAD.
Aware of the need to develop visitor attractions and distinctive tourism destination branding, the Government of Vanuatu launched in 2016 the 1st Agritourism Festival to promote local fresh and processed food for nationals and visitors. A special focus is put into strengthening agritourism at the 1st Pacific Week of Agriculture organised by Vanuatu on 16-20th October 2017. In this context, PIPSO, SPTO, CTA, IFAD and other partners will organise:
- A focused agritourism workshop to share lessons learned and take stock on progress made in serving tourism markets in selected countries to be held on 18th October (14:00-17:30).
- A chefs training session. As part of joint SPTO/PIPSO/CTA efforts to promote food tourism in the Pacific region, support Pacific cuisine branding and enhance local chef’s skills in sourcing locally, we will also organise a two-day chefs training on 19-20th October 2017.
The workshop will share best practices in policy and agribusiness development in the agri-tourism supply chain by some countries and will analyse the support needed to move this agenda forward.
The panel discussion will feature views, experiences and recommendations by policy-makers from agriculture and tourism, entrepreneurs and representatives of the hospitality sector.
These will centre on
- cross-sectoral policies needed to tap into tourism markets;
- successful local businesses which have innovated to meet demands in quality, consistency and product development;
- tourism sector expectations, and needs from farmers and agribusiness; and
- the role of chefs in sourcing locally and promoting local cuisine in hotel menus.
The discussion will bring input into the regional strategy
- Sharing of lessons learned from supportive policies in agritourism developed in Samoa and Vanuatu;
- Discussion of selected private and public partnerships bringing new opportunities for the small-scale farmers and agritourism sector;
- Development of recommendations for a regional strategy;
- Highlights of discussions and recommendations will feed into the Pacific Agriculture and Tourism Ministers Meeting.
Technical and Financial support
Technical and financial support for these activities is provided by (i) CTA with matching funding from IFAD and in collaboration with PIPSO is implementing the Project “Leveraging the Development of Local Food Crops and Fisheries Value Chains for Improved Nutrition and Sustainable Food Systems in the Pacific Islands with a focus on Fiji, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga, and Vanuatu” which goal is to strengthen the capacity of the Pacific Island Governments, farmer and private sector organizations, and sub-regional institutions to develop strategies and programmes, as well as mobilize financing, that can increase poor rural people’s access to nutritious and healthy food.; (ii) South Pacific Tourism Organisation (iii) Vanuatu Government (Ministry of Agriculture and Tourism); (iv) CTA project on agritourism in the Pacific.
Samoa Agritourism Policy Setting Workshop, Apia, Samoa, 13-16 December 2016
- Highlights Samoa Agritourism Policy Setting Workshop
Vanuatu Agritourism Policy Setting Workshop, Port-Vila, Vanuatu, 25-27 May 2016
Vanuatu Agritourism Festival 2016, Port-Vila, Vanuatu, 9-11 November 2016
Second Pacific Agribusiness Forum, 29 August - 1 September 2016, Apia, Samoa
First Pacific Agribusiness Forum, 1-3 July 2015, Denarau, Fiji
Pacific Community Agritourism Week, 29 June - 3 July 2015, Denarau, Nadi, Fiji
- Chefs for Development (Chefs4Dev) http://chefs4dev.org/
New Opportunities in the Agritourism Sector in the Pacific
Wednesday 18th October 2017
Melanesian Hotel, Port Vila, Vanuatu
14:00 – 17:30
Organised by the Vanuatu Government, PIPSO, SPTO, IFAD and CTA
|14:00-14:15||Introductory remarks: Benjamin Shing, Acting Director General for Agriculture, Vanuatu Ministry of Agriculture; Alisi Tuqa, Acting CEO,PIPSO; Chris Cocker, CEO, South Pacific Tourism Organisation (SPTO); Ron Hartman, Country Director, IFAD South East Asia and the Pacific Sub-Regional Office; Michael Hailu, Director, CTA.|
|14:15-14:20||Context and objectives|
Effective Policy Agritourism Policy Development
This session will feature the progress made in establishing a policy framework on agritourism and the concrete steps adopted by some countries in the Pacific.
- Samoa progress in agritourism strategy - Tai Matatumua, Policy and Planning, Ministry of Agriculture and Suifua Faamatuainu, Manager, Planning & Development, Samoa Tourism Authority
Building supply and demand in the agritourism sector
|This session will share field experiences from the private sector in capturing the opportunities in the tourism market and lessons learned in expanding local sourcing and promoting local cuisine
- Promoting food tourism and strengthening chef’s skills across the Pacific - Chris Cocker, CEO, South Pacific Tourism Organisation (SPTO)
- Linking farmers to the tourism market and promoting organic food - Alberta Vitale, Associate Director, WIBDI, Samoa
- Promoting local food and cuisine: successes and way forward - Chef Horace Evans, Home Café, Samoan Culinary Association
- Strengthening the supply capacity in quality and branding - Terry Adlington, Private sector cluster, Vanuatu
|16:20-16:40||Elements for a regional strategy|
|16:40-16:50||Online value chain platform: input from the agritourism sector Alisi Tuqa, Acting CEO,PIPSO|
|16:50-17:00||Summary by the Moderator|