The government of Samoa is looking to revive what used to be a $US7.8 million export market for kava.
Kava was a significant export commodity until a ban imposed by European countries in 2001 caused many farmers to quit the industry, RNZI reports. Consequently when the ban was lifted in 2015, demand could not be met and earnings fell to just under 79,000 dollars.
The Ministry of Commerce and Industry is asking local partners to increase their production and wants to attract farmers back into the sector.
CEO Pulotu Lyndon Chu Ling said those farmers that stuck with kava are now reaping the benefits.
Pulotu said by 2020 the government aims to have kava earnings reach at least three million dollars a year.