As soon as early next year, local farmers and exporters would be able to export to formal markets
Radio & TV Tonga, Nuku’alofa, 03/11/2017
The Ministry of Food, Agriculture, and Fisheries, – MAFF – in cooperation with the Pacific Horticultural & Agricultural Market Access – PHAMA – Program, many local farmers and exporters would be able to export to formal markets overseas, as soon as early next year, with Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point – HACCP – certification.
Apiame TEGUMALUA from HACCP has been in Tonga over the past week conducting training with staff from the Food Division, local farmers, and exporters, to up skill the local export sector to meet HACCP standards.
With HACCP certification, local produce would be accepted by formal markets overseas, which would open up a wider export market and give local exporters more business opportunities.
Siale Lasike, one of the local farmers who also exports the produce, says once the Tongan exporters would meet HACCP standards, many more market overseas would open up and exporters hope to be able to gain back opportunities in markets that had been closed to them due to their produce not attaining HACCP certification.
This program would see the Food Division pack house upgraded to meet HACCP standards and exporters would be able to pack their produce here and in following the HACCP approved procedures, would be able to get HACCP certification. This is expected to be complete around January to March 2018.