When Michelle Felise talks about her product CocoSina coconut oil her eyes light up. Mrs Felise and her husband Sasa were first time exhibitors at the Pacific Trade & Invest (PT&I) Pacific Hub stand at the Auckland Food Show 2016.
Mr and Mrs Felise run a local courier company but when the call came to be a New Zealand wholesaler she wanted to help out knowing the product’s value. But it was also a good fit for the courier business.
Mrs Felise is quietly spoken but passionate about CocoSina coconut oil made in Samoa. It is a product she uses all the time, in her food, on her skin and as a lip balm. For her 97-year old grandfather who passed away just last year, she used to make what she describes as “bullet proof” cocoa by blending a teaspoon of coconut oil with his hot drinks like cocoa to make it creamier, richer and satisfying.
Visitor responses from the Food Show were positive. People were drawn to the CocoSina stand by the distinctive black label with the image of Sina, a figure from Samoan mythology, she said. Being first timers at such a big food event, Mrs Felise said she wasn’t sure what to expect but she had “learned a lot” from the four days.
CocoSina is refined and has a neutral flavour, a feature that was appreciated by many tasters.
Mrs Felise complimented the PT&I Pacific Hub and all the support she received from PT&I Trade Development Manager Joe Fuavao who organised the show and seven other Pacific Island product distributors at the Pacific Hub.
CocoSina Coconut Oil is manufactured in Samoa by Pacific Oil, Managing Director Samau Etuale Sefo.
Pacific Oil began operations in 2007 and relies on local farmers from Upolu and Savai’i to produce copra for processing into oil and exported internationally.
The company is considering diversifying the product range adding a coconut oil spread and moving into organic Virgin Coconut Oil (VCO) and Fair Trade. They are also planning to add an online sales component to their website, Mrs Felise said.
For more information, please email PT&I Trade Development Manager Joe Fuavao on firstname.lastname@example.org