Long term residents and business entrepreneurs reveal some of their business ideas and provide insight into their daily lives and love for the organic products that we have in abundance here in Vanuatu.
Vicki is one of the owners of Organic Paradise which has just moved to its fantastic new location at Chantillys on the Bay boutique Hotel (our favourite stop for breakfast and excellent coffee). Their doors opened on Monday 27th June with much excitement from the Vanuatu residents and locals.
The idea behind Organic Paradise is to provide an outlet for local producers to reach customers, a place where they can find a great selection of what Vanuatu has to offer, in one place in their raw, near raw or value added form. From vanilla pods to coffee beans, chilli, pepper, nuts to gourmet delights like sauces and snack foods. Also noni juice and other health and beauty products and emerging products like chocolate and peanut butter.
It was Christophe from Sharper Images brain child to move the store to Chantillys. A bit of background: Sharper Image which is now right over the road is one of Port Vilas leading wholesale and retail business dealing in everything from stationary, furniture, electronics to a wonderful kitchen selection. There are thousands of unique gifts and innovative items, gifts for him, gifts for her, and gifts for kids.
Moving the store to Chantilly’s and opposite Sharper Image amuses Organic Paradises owner Vicki Joe as she can see already him encouraging people who purchase kitchen, homeware and other gifts from Sharper Image to pop over to Organic Paradise to buy complementing products that are 100% Vanuatu made.
Vicki confesses that their house (yes they are a wonderful couple!) is a bit of a Sharper Image and Organic Paradise showroom as they love all their products and use them in their everyday life with passion. This includes coconut oil for cooking, black and green pepper, chilli and turmeric as pantry basics, nangae nuts at the ready to add in handfuls to their cooking, cocoa nibs to throw in a smoothie, local coffee beans ready to grind for the mornings’ double espresso. Also peanut butter in the fridge (like in NZ), tamanu oil in the beach bag in case of bites and scratches, nangae oil in the bathroom to deal with sport aches and nourishing coconut oil soap scented with sandalwood. Even their three dogs are given a tablespoon of noni juice in their evening meal every night, which they are sure keeps their two oldest dogs at 11 years and 17 years healthy and free from signs of arthritis.
They are very grateful to their loyal local resident customers who buy their cuisine basics, bring their visitors and take gifts when they go overseas, as well as local resorts and tour operators who bring travellers. Don’t forget the visitors who find this wonderful store on their Hotspots Map.
Lately they have been making gift packs of local products on demand for group events and functions hosting visitors which is an excellent idea – what better way to say welcome, thank you, and look at what Vanuatu can produce!
Story by Jackie Potgieter of Pandanus Consulting