Who We Are?

Who is Pacific Heart of Palm?

Pacific Heart of Palm is grown at Hogamata farm at Lokia, Sigatoka Valley which is Fiji’s only cultivator of Pejibaye or the Peach Palm Bactris gasipaes, a suckering palm which enables sustainable harvesting from the same plant.

The farm has over 4,000 bearing palms, 100 of which are separately cultivated as an orchard for fruit and seed production.

Poultry manure, high quality compost, the recycling of all harvest debris and an organic fertilizer provide the crop nutrients.

These together with gravity-fed drip-irrigation from our own spring and the non-destructive harvesting technique provide for a sustainable and advanced agro-ecological cultivation system.

Pacific Heart of Palm Plantation
Peach palm fruit

How did we start?

Environment Consultants Fiji, Dick’s consultancy company, started operating a pilot project to cultivate Peach Palm at Lokia in association with NatureFiji-MareqetiViti – Fiji’s foremost local biodiversity conservation organization in March 2010.

The Peach Palm introduction from Hawaii is an element of the Species Recovery Plan for Fiji’s endemic and endangered Fiji Sago Palm. A palm which is threatened by unsustainable harvesting of wild stands for its heart of palm – called Seko, and thatch. The Recovery Plan has been endorsed by Fiji Government’s Departments of Environment, Agriculture and Forestry and by the Namosi-Serua Provincial Offices.

Commercial sale of Seko now requires a permit, and the intention was to find a source of ‘heart of palm from a species which could be sustainably grown and harvested. The Fiji Sago Palm is now a protected species under the Endangered and Protected Species Act 2002, and its commercial harvesting is prohibited.

Peach Palm seedlings from the Hogamata Farm project have been provided to Nacocolevu Research Station to enable the Agriculture Dept to propagate its own seeds for distribution to farmers and villagers who formerly harvested ‘Seko’, and to others who are interested in it.

Heart of Palm Pilot Project with Pejibaye or Peach Palm Bactris gasipaes