Biocalédonia has been holding an Organics Festival in Houaïlou since 2012and so, on 8 August 2015, the Do Neva football stadium hosted the 4th festival.
Biocalédonia Association’s Organics Festival is designed to introduce organic farming to the general public and promote its members’ efforts to become certified (i.e. to get the BioPasifika label).
In fact, with a participatory guarantee system, consumers are also key volunteers in the association’s local groups. This day-long event is also used to promote healthy diets and demonstrate farming techniques for organic farms.
This included a gourmet food competition. The sole requirement: only use local products! A total of 13 people competed in the contest, to the jury’s great delight. We should note that site’s regulations prohibited both Coca Cola and Tulem soft drinks! Instead there was good, home-made juice (e.g. passionfruit, carambola/star fruit). The food on sale was also based solely on organic and local products.
About 1000 people from throughout the Territory travelled to attend the festival. The day was marked by technical displays such as demonstrations on perennial round mounds, purines, integrated fruit production, mulching and grafting; the latter in partnership with Arbofruits. As it was the International Year of Soils, there was a live radio debate on “Soils, the foundation of fertility” on Radio Djiido. Finally, there was also a workshop on natural dyes.
There were more stands than in 2014, including stands offering:
i) BioPasifika-certified products from New Caledonia’s local groups (delegations from Lifou, Maré and the Southern local groups attended the festival),
ii) BioPasifika-certified in-conversion products,
iii) natural products from WAA WI LUU’s markets,
iv) food services using 100% natural products,
v) awareness activities on massage for children.
Biocalédonia Organics Festival is held in partnership with the municipal authorities of Houaïlou, the Northern Province, Do Neva Agricultural High School, Arbofruits and Radio Djiido. Members of Biocalédonia, both regular members and staff, had, in fact, taken part in the Nitani forum throughout the week that preceded the festival, dealing with a variety of topics such as basket distribution, permaculture, purines, and the roles of both Biocalédonia and the Organics Festival.
Special note should be made of the excellent level of mobilisation by the Houaïlou local group in preparing for the festival and on the big day through very well decorated and supplied stands, all in the bright sunshine!
See you next year for the 5th Festival over the weekend of 1st August!