Island News | NATION

Herbal Medicine For the Strong Paves Way For Villager’s Livelihood

Nemaia Salavou from Nukutocia village in Lovoni, Ovalau, is selling herbal medicine made from the warusi (pleiosmilax vitiensis – smilaceae).
03 Feb 2020 10:11
Herbal Medicine For the Strong Paves Way For Villager’s Livelihood
Nemaia Salavou selling warusi near Food City supermarket in Suva. Photo: Kelera Sovasiga

Nemaia Salavou from Nukutocia village in Lovoni, Ovalau, is selling herbal medicine made from the warusi (pleiosmilax vitiensis – smilaceae).

Warusi is also called, sometimes, warasidina. Leaves used medicinally, have similar properties to sarsaparilla.

The 47-year-old said he heard that warusi can grow in different climatic conditions. However, he preferred the ones grown in Nukutocia because he believed they had a stronger effect than those grown elsewhere.

He said in his village the men drank warusi to keep them strong.

“It’s good for the muscles,” he said.

In 2005 he said he brought the warusi to Viti Levu and sold it at the Lautoka market.

He said he had to explain the new herbal medicine to the consumers.

Preparation

Mr Salavou said the extraction of the juice from the plant was done through cooking.

He said cooking took four to five hours.

He said many, especially the males, usually joked about warusi but the medicine helped the consumers to be healthy.

Marketing

Now he has an outlet in Suva and Sigatoka.

He said now that it was popular he had received orders on his telephone.

Mr Salavou is selling warusi juice in 1.5 litre bottles for $10 each.

According to Mr Salavou he was not making any profit but was selling it because it helped those drinking it.

Apart from warusi juice Mr Salavou is also selling alpasita plants.

He has a yaqona farm in Koro and Nukutocia.

Edited by Ranoba Baoa

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