Canoe run for chocolate factory

The Uto Ni Yalo sails from Fiji to Vanuatu and then to Bougainville where it will load cocoa beans for New Zealand.

ORGANICALLY-grown cocoa beans from Bougainville will be shipped to New Zealand using ancient Pacific seafaring traditions. One tonne of beans will be sun-dried on the deck of the Fiji-flagged Uto Ni Yalo – which sailed more than halfway across the world using only the wind, waves and the stars for navigation – on the way to the Wellington Chocolate Factory. The voyage, which started from Suva on July 28, was made possible with philanthropic donations of 449 people who pledged more than $NZ37,000 on the crowdfunding network Kickstarter. “This is a chance for us to show that we, the people of the Pacific, can export our produce using sustainable shipping methods,” said Uto Ni Yalo captain, Angelo Smith. Funds raised will go towards a cocoa farming community in Bougainville.

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