13 Jan 2015

Kava shortage bugs Vanuatu

12:55 pm on 13 January 2015

A fresh delivery of kava lasted just a day in Vanuatu's Port Vila, as a kava shortage continues to affect kava bar owners.

Bar owners queued to buy from a delievery of about 100 bags of fresh kava last Friday, after more than half had been been forced to shut because of the shortage.

The kava supply has recently dried up as commercial vessels stopped services to the main islands that grow kava, Pentecost, Epi, Malekula and Tanna, over the holiday period.

The shortage is estimated to have affected more than 1,000 people who depend on the sale of kava as their main source of income.

The next shipment of fresh kava is expected during the weekend.

The kava shortage has also seen the price of kava from Efate rise by 50 percent to about four US dollars a kilo.