South Pacific islands to ban Western junk food for tourists and residents

Published on : Friday, February 3, 2017

VanuatuAuthorities of the South Pacific nation of Vanuatu have taken an innovative step to prohibit imported Western food in an attempt to eliminate the potential health problems.



Torba province, the northernmost island grouping in the sprawling archipelago, with a population less than 10,000 has planned to ban all foreign foods. The residents are mostly subsistence farmers and hope to convert the entire area into an organic region by 2020. Keeping the concept of sustainable tourism in mind, tourism bungalows have been ordered to serve guests only locally-sourced, organic produce.



Father Luc Dini, head of Torba’s tourism council, said that the ban would benefit the islanders’ health. He continued that at the moment there is an infiltration of junk food from overseas. According to Dini, the province has a bounty of produce to sustain itself, with fish, shellfish, taro, yams, paw paw and pineapple all caught or grown locally. It has not yet been decided whether alcohol will be included in the ban.



The nine most obese countries or territories in the world – American Samoa, Nauru, the Cook Islands, Tokelau, Tonga, Samoa, Palau, Kiribati and the Marshall Islands – are all in the South Pacific.

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