Viliame Valame is the proud owner and farmer of Sky-City Farm in RakiRaki. Sky-City Farm is a family-run farm, with Viliame leading production with his wife and two sons helping when needed. One of our farmer recruiter volunteers met up with Viliame in mid-March, to onboard him onto our platform. His humble and open nature, made him a clear stand out and below are some interesting things he mentioned about farming in Fiji we wanted to share.
Viliame is constantly experimenting on his farm to find out how to grow new crops or to modify natural remedies to improve the quality of his soi. One such experiment was to trial apple production on his farm. However, no matter what he did, the flowers never bloomed. Unknown to him, this was a climatic limitation of his farm in Fiji. Apples require a certain number of ‘chill hours’ in order to flower, which is difficult in tropical environments. Consequently, one of Viliame’s personal goals is to visit New Zealand to see and learn from commercial apple growers.
He is a huge advocate for soil and firmly believes that without healthy soil, crops will not thrive. This is why Sky-City Farm is all organic and uses the basics of permaculture to produce high-quality dalo, that are harvested every week.
These traditional farming techniques enable Viliame to grow dalo consistently. However, this makes his farm attractive to both pigs and thieves. With an increased income, Viliame could build a fence around his farm, to prevent both thieves and pests.
Sky-City farm is like many farms in Fiji and it sure keeps its owners busy. Viliame is passionate about agriculture and aims to be a role model for his two sons to inspire the younger generation to engage in agriculture.
In Viliames own words:
“Come, let’s have a Fijian Feast right in the middle of my farm, I tell you the truth, you won’t be disappointed why I name Sky-City Farm. But please give me a call first!”.
These are the kind of farmers we want you to hear about. To learn more about Viliame, visit Sky-City Farm’s profile page.