Agritourism Operator: Votausi Mackenzie-Reur
Name of Business: Lapita Café Limited
Location: Port Vila, Efate, SHEFA Province & Luganville, Santo, SANMA Province
Business Description: Lapita provides locally sourced and manufactured food products throughout Vanuatu and sometimes abroad. The company has developed its expertise since its establishment in 1999 and its aim is to achieve a high standard of satisfaction and service to its customers. The company process the following products: tamarind, mango and pawpaw sauces & relish; tamarind Sweet Chilli Sauce, choko and vegetable Relish; pawpaw & ginger jam and mango jam; dried local fruits; dried banana and pineapple; root vegetable chips; taro and banana salted chips; gluten free manioc flour; assorted flavoured cookies using local nuts and spices and Lapita’s own gluten free flour as the main ingredient and Indigenous nuts such as nangai (Canarium Indicum) which are dried, roasted, salted or sugar coated or made into pure oil. The nangi is wildly harvested by women throughout the islands.
The company specialises in supporting the slow food movement with main markets being supermarkets, hotels, resorts and restaurants, speciality shops and the national airline, Air Vanuatu.
From 2014 to 2015 the company worked closely with Iririki Island Resort to develop an Agri tour for Vanuatu local fresh foods and value adding in a processing facility to these foods. This tour was advertised amongst Iririki Island Resort guests. It consisted of a tour to the main market then to Lapita Café Limited processing facilities where they learn about the supply chain of the food products to packaged products. At the end of the tour the guests are served refreshments which includes Lapita assorted products, local coffee and freshly squeezed fruit drinks or green coconuts. The tour was really successful for the company but ceased since TC Pam in 2015. TC Pam reduced supply of raw materials for the company and since 2018, Lapita Café Limited moved some of its processing to Luganville, Santo. Since then the company has purchased a buffer farm and is now planting most of its raw materials to support its organic farmers.
The future plan for Lapita Café Limited is to re-build a planned construction of a HACCP certified food processing factory in Luganville Santo. This facility will include a local cuisine food Café and souvenir shop for visitors to enjoy some exotic local food and snacks and offer an experiential tour for domestic and international tourists to its farm so that they can have a farm to table experience. The cost of the tour from 2014 to 2015 was: 2,500 for adults and 1000vt for children 6-12 years old. Local School Children (12 years and older) and other educational institutions the company charges 500vt per head. The tour is normally 1 hour but often because the visitors loved it so much it could extend to another 30 minutes.