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Waqeravi Thrives On His Watermelons

Waqeravi Thrives On His Watermelons
Market vendor Neori Waqerevu selling water melon at Nadi Market on August 20 , 2018. Photos: Arieta Vakasukawaqa
August 24
10:00 2018

 

Neori Waqeravi had to shelve his goal of pursuing further studies at tertiary level after completing high school due to finan­cial constrains.

The Vatubalavu village lad from the hills of Navosa didn’t give up but instead resorted to the land which has enabled him to earn a fortune from growing watermelons.

It has been ten years since Mr Waqeravi took up planting water­melons of which he earns around $3000 a week during peak season.

Despite the geographical location of his village, he travels from his village in the Sigatoka Valley to sell his produce at Nadi Market.

This usually takes more than four hours travelling by truck.

His four acres farm is near his vil­lage. On that portion he also plants corn, pumpkins, green vegetables like cabbages, etc.

“I had never regretted this decision to take up farming after I dropped out of high school,” Mr Waqeravi said.

“I’ve earned a lot of money from selling watermelons because most of my buyers are restaurant owners and I even supply to some hotels,” he said.

“With this I am able to send all my four children to school and pay for other family expenses.

“Planting and farming have been great for me and my family.”

He advises young people to use their land resources if they know that they won’t be able to make it big academically.

“The problem is once we are stuck after finishing high school, the men­tality is such that we think that we won’t become successful.

“Always try to look around and see what is available around you, every itaukei owns land – there is no ex­cuse to be not able to make money,” he said.

His watermelon price ranges from $20 for big ones and $5 for the small­er ones.

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