Matantas Social Enterprise
January 2016 , Matantas, Vanuatu
Duration: 2 hours
The remote coastal village of Matantas is located in the far north of Espiritu Santo, Vanuatu. Home to approximately 250 people, there are no jobs in-country except for the processing of copra.
Two Llamas wanted to help the community to develop a small-scale sustainable business that would allow the community to utilise existing natural resources to create a unique product for the Luganville and Port Olry markets.
Matanatas benefits from volcanic soils and a year-round supply of water. crops such as bananas, taro, yam and kumala (sweet potato) are well established. The village is only accessible via a pot-holed dirt road that requires a 4x4 to traverse. There are limited vehicles owned by the village and it takes approximately 90 minutes to reach the island capital of Luganville in the south.
Luganville is where the largest fresh produce market is located and where the only jobs can be found. Although most villagers in Matantas survive through subsistence farming, cash is required to pay for children's school fees.
In January 2016, the community selected a respected, hard working woman called Prisca Tavue to undergo training in the preparation of healthy, naturally flavoured snack foods. Testing of various tuber root species and large, green Chinese bananas was undertaken, followed by the creation of recipes that would suit local tastes. The final products were then tested on local villagers and their feedback solicited for improvement.
By August 2016, Prisca's Tasty Chips were being sold within the village and Prisca was ready to expand to larger markets. Two Llamas made introductions to restaurateurs and hotel owners in Port Olry and Luganville, with store owners identified as well
Although banana and kumala chips are already offered in stores and at the Luganville produce market, these tend to be greasy and unflavoured. In contrast, Prisca's Tasty Chips come in a range of flavours, are not oily and are sealed in plastic ziplock bags for freshness and hygiene.
They are particularly 'more-ish' when eaten with a cool Tusker beer in hand. It is hoped Prisca's Tasty Chips will become a favourite snack in Santo, enabling her to expand further to markets in Port Vila and eventually overseas.
VT8000 start up cost (funded by SUP Wilderness Adventures)
Quantity of orders, net profits, number of community members benefiting from the new revenue stream, number of community members employed by ot supplying to the business.