Waisiki Tamani, known as Sikeli, was led into farming after working for businesses in Suva and realising that he no longer wanted to be bossed around, but would rather be his own boss. So, in 2019, Sikeli moved back to his village to commercialise his family farm.
He began by setting up his beehives, then planting vegetables and yaqona on the gentle slopes near the beach. But he was eager to grow something new and unique that no one else was growing. So he started researching mushroom farming.
Now, Sikeli travels to Nadi regularly to collect his substrate and inoculum to experiment with different mushroom growing methods.
His first attempt was conducted under his house because it was a cooler environment out of the harsh sunlight. Now, he is testing outgrowing the mushrooms in bags to make the system more efficient.
With Aggie Global, Sikeli is gauging the demand for his oyster mushrooms. He needs to know who will buy his mushrooms regularly and how much they would want before he is confident in commercialising the farm further. This is where Aggie Global fits in by identifying suitable buyers and connecting them with Sikeli.
Once he has enough and consistent revenue, he wants to expand his farm so he can grow his mushrooms in old shipping containers to make use of what would otherwise be a waste product. From there Sikeli wants to be able to support his family (mother, sister and her children) while he goes to ‘live his life’ with farming.
To view his products and farmer profile, click here.