New ornamental varieties to bring more beauty to Samoa
New varieties of exotic orchids and ornamental plants have been introduced for cultivation in Samoa to bolster the country’s blooming ornamental horticulture sector.
The move is part of a collaboration between the Australia and New Zealand-supported Pacific Horticultural and Agricultural Market Access Plus Program and local grower groups – Fa’alapotopotoga Aiga Ma’ale’ale (FAMA) and Organic Mothers of the New Earth (OMONEA), to improve the availability and production of ornamental plant varieties.
FAMA and OMONEA have come together with a vision of establishing a well organised and progressive sector that creates income generating opportunities for growers, who are mainly women, with prospects for sustainable and long-term growth, including export markets.
Officiating at the launch of the new ornamental varieties, Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries, Hon Lauulialemalietoa Leuatea Polataivao Fosi welcomed the initiative which supports the vision of Samoa’s Agriculture and Fisheries Sector Plan (2023-2027) for increased security and economic growth through diversification.
“Ornamental horticulture is very popular in Samoa and is a blooming industry with tremendous potential. We can see this through the presence of beautiful floral boutiques and leis (ula) made with local orchids being sold for special ceremonies, public and private events in churches, hotels, and even at the local Fugalei market.”
“Our Ministry supports the initiative for the importation of exotic ornamentals of orchids, anthuriums and desert roses to improve the availability of and access to exotic ornamentals, to increase the range and quantity of plants that are available for women to propagate, market and generate income. Our government has already established the new Samoa Export Authority, and we welcome this important initiative by PHAMA Plus and FAMA-OMONEA to export in the future.”
Ms. Sili Malaeolela Valerie Tuiā, FAMA-OMONEA Project Manager and Technical Adviser, expressed gratitude for the continued support received from Australia and New Zealand, which is greatly benefiting Samoan communities, particularly women and people with disabilities.
“Samoa is truly blessed by this partnership, along with the many others. Through this collaboration, FAMA-OMONEA has identified the urgent need for more imported planting materials in order to make a significant impact in the cut-flower industry in Samoa in the near future. Therefore, we kindly request further support for this initiative to facilitate rapid multiplication efforts for future export markets.
Australian High Commissioner to Samoa HE Emily Luck said; “We recognise the critical role that civil societies play in fostering sustainable and thriving communities. That is why we are pleased to support women growers and FAMA-OMONEA members in their vision to develop a sustainable innovative ornamental horticulture sector. Australia’s recently released International Development Policy reinforces our commitment to gender equality and climate action and that is on very good display at FAMA-OMONEA.”
New Zealand’s High Commissioner, Dr Trevor Matheson, took pleasure in cutting the ribbon during the event before he and other invited guests ventured into an oasis filled with beauty. “Aotearoa New Zealand is delighted to be supporting the partnership between PHAMA Plus and FAMA-OMONEA. Samoa’s ornamental horticulture community is in good hands with such passionate and tenacious members. Like our friendships and relationships, ornamentals require tender loving care to produce something extraordinary and we wish this partnership great success.”
With a commitment to climate smart practices, PHAMA Plus is also supporting FAMA-OMONEA to adopt climate resilient and sustainable practices and manage biosecurity risks when importing exotic plant materials.
For more information contact PHAMA Plus Country Manager Samoa – Kuinimeri Finau at firstname.lastname@example.org