2015 was another great year for building awareness about kava and Taki Mai.
In addition to the exciting release of our kava powder and capsules to supplement the four flavored kava shots, we received approval in Australia as a therapeutic good, and continued to grow our presence around Oceania, as well as in the US.
We closed the year in Australia with appearances at the Rugby 7s tournaments in Queensland and northern New South Wales, as well as appearances in Auckland (New Zealand), sponsoring well-attended events.
We are also growing awareness in Fiji with the Manai Island Resort using Taki Mai in a cocktail they have developed called Taki Mai Tai; there have also been plenty of educational exhibitions and product demos in Fiji.
What can you expect in 2016 in the US?
Towards the end of last year, a Fijian Ministry of Agriculture delegation went to the US and visited the Whole Foods Market in Scottsdale, Arizona. This is one of 50 outlets in the US where Taki Mai is sold, including supermarkets, pharmaceuticals, and department stores in the Pacific and Hawaii.
Taki Mai kava shots are sold as sports drinks that can calm, soothe and relax the body.
James Tonkin is company president, and he explained a little more about what can be expected in the coming year:
“Taki Mai products will be promoted in the major outlets through demo awareness to consumers and also in the Food shows in March 2016.”
Expect to see Taki Mai kava shots hit more store shelves this year. Judging by how many new kava bars are opening across the country, demand is spiraling.
Experience the calm from our online store
Another exciting development in 2016 is the unveiling of the Taki Mai online store.
Our online platform will be up and running by mid-January for deliveries of Taki Mai kava products in New Zealand and Australia.
This is hopefully the first step in being able to ship our kava all over the world, and we are working with our distributors to make it happen.
Key challenges in 2016
Of course there are always challenges –and a consistent kava supply is one of the key challenges for Taki Mai in the year ahead.
Only the finest kava from the island of Ovalau in Fiji is used and 70 contracted farmers on the island supply the natural root to maintain the flow of kava shots to the market:
“We are keen to increase our volume and push for the four flavored Taki Mai shots to the market, but our problem is always the supply of the two varieties we require from the farmer. These two varieties that have the kava lactones levels required for the special products,” Tonkin said.
The Fijian government is doing its bit to spread awareness of the potential that export markets hold; the Taki Mai nurseries in Ovalau also continue to be a shining light for the future quality of kava coming out of the island.
There is a recognition within the Fijian government, through the blossoming success of Taki Mai, that the country has a valuable and much sought after international commodity within its islands.
The acting Permanent Secretary for Agriculture in Fiji recently said:
“What the delegation have witnessed and observed from this visit has confirmed that Kava is one of the potential commodities for Fiji and the market is huge. We have not yet tapped into Australia and New Zealand with this product and then now you have Europe that just recently reopened its market.”
We will continue to push into new frontiers in 2016, to help our Ovalau farmers, Fiji as a whole, and kava lovers around the world.