Source: Press Secretariat
APIA, SAMOA – THURSDAY 23 NOVEMBER 2017: Samoa has joined the fight against negative propaganda against coconut products.
The negative propaganda on the health and nutritional attributes of coconut and its products, emerged from the American Heart Association (AHA) release in April this year on the Presidential Advisory on Cardiovascular Disease and Saturated Fats.
This statement singled out coconut oil as not recommended for consumption due to its potential risk of heart disease.
At its annual meeting held in Kiribati last month, the Asian and Pacific Coconut Community (APCC) declared its fight by signing the TARAWA ACCORD which was signed by the Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries, Lopao’o Natanielu Mu’a.
Between April and June this year, the APCC through its Scientific Advisory Committee on Health prepared and submitted three rebuttals to the release by AHA.
The rebuttals were directed to the WHO, FAO and to AHA with copies furnished to all 16 APCC member countries (Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Vanuatu, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Samoa).
The principal objective of the TARAWA ACCORD is to promote the health and nutritional attributes of coconut products.
Coconuts occupy about 12 million hectares of land with an annual production of 10 million metric tonnes in copra accounting for 85% of the world’s coconut production that directly affects the socioeconomic lives of more than 150 million of the world’s population.
The Accord recognizes that the coconut is grown in over 90 countries and is endowed with multifaceted health and nutritional attributes making it highly beneficial for human consumption to achieve overall health, nourishment and wellness for peoples.
It also recognizes that many people lack this important knowledge and the urgency to effectively inform, educate, promote, and conduct continuous awareness of the health and nutritional benefits of coconut, coconut oil and other healthy products of coconut.
Further, it recognizes that there is a need for further conclusive studies that would provide uncontestable scientific evidence as absolute proof of the health and nutritional attributes of coconut, coconut oil, and other healthy products of coconut to assure consumers and effectively counter the negative propaganda of all opposition to coconut and its products.
By signing the Accord, all 16 member countries of APCC have declared their commitment to affirm, support and effectively promote the health and nutritional benefits of coconut, coconut oil and all healthy products of coconut and their uses within their respective countries and internationally.