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Are we early to the party?

Elmanaro

Port Vila, Vanuatu
Kava Vendor
I feel like Kava is still a very new thing in America and Europe. Most people I have encountered have never even heard of it.

In Port Vila there is a kava bar on every corner so I imagine that kava drinking will be going mainstream one day, once people get a taste for it. The price has been consistently climbing here for years due to overseas demand.

Have you guys seen more people coming on board recently? I always feel bad when a newbie doesn't get the desired effects and they start to doubt the power of kava.
 

Kapmcrunk

The Kaptain (40g)
KavaForums Founder
I feel like Kava is still a very new thing in America and Europe. Most people I have encountered have never even heard of it.

In Port Vila there is a kava bar on every corner so I imagine that kava drinking will be going mainstream one day, once people get a taste for it. The price has been consistently climbing here for years due to overseas demand.

Have you guys seen more people coming on board recently? I always feel bad when a newbie doesn't get the desired effects and they start to doubt the power of kava.
It's still quite new to the United States.

I was given some export figures for Vanuatu

"172 tonnes to New Caledonia

109 tonnes to Kiribati

65 tonnes to the US"

The US, I personally believe, is still at it's infancy in terms of the kava industry. We only receive ~35% of the kava that New Caledonia does from Van, so I think we still have a ways to go. Several things give me this indication. First of all, we only have around 200 kava bars. Second, those "kava bars" are more "botanical bars" than anything, and serve an array of different psychoactive herbs to customers. Some of these bars are "kava" in name only. Only a handful of those 200 focus solely on kava alone, which is a shame.

In all honesty I still believe we're at the ground floor of this industry. One vendor can have a very significant impact on the whole of the picture.
 

Alia

'Awa Grower/Collector
I have to agree with @Edward. Today's Honolulu newspaper (Star Advertiser) has a Hawaiian language editorial with the following Synopsis: "Drinking awa is a much better alternative to drinking alcohol. I had no choice but to abandon alcohol, and although it was rough going at first, I have found awa to be much preferable".
Unfortunate that an academic (retired teacher) made a comment to the story which was quite inappropriate and, this portion clearly, incorrect:
"Why encourage people to drink anything whose purpose is to turn the mind into mush? 'Awa is a debilitating Hawaiian form of booze when consumed outside of sacred ceremonies".
 

jewalker7842

Kava Curious
Kava is definitely new here in the US. I've turned a few people on to kava, but none consume it on a regular basis like I do. It is very hard for people to get past the initial offensive taste to get the effects. Then when they first drink it they do not get the effects it's a very hard sell. Once the do though they are hooked. It is just getting them past that point.

I stumbled on kava by complete accident. I was looking for alternatives to alcohol that were not addictive and wouldn't kill me. I didn't think anything like that existed, but it does. I am thankful every day I stumbled across a random redit article recommending kava for anxiety.

"Why encourage people to drink anything whose purpose is to turn the mind into mush? 'Awa is a debilitating Hawaiian form of booze when consumed outside of sacred ceremonies".
Which couldn't be farther from the truth. I've drank too much kava every now and then, but even when I'm krunked out my mind I still had complete control of myself and my cognitive thinking was not affected at all.
 

Kalm with Kava

Kava Vendor
Unfortunate that an academic (retired teacher) made a comment to the story which was quite inappropriate and, this portion clearly, incorrect:
"Why encourage people to drink anything whose purpose is to turn the mind into mush? 'Awa is a debilitating Hawaiian form of booze when consumed outside of sacred ceremonies".
Is it the year 1820? I can't wait to hear about their opinion on electricity...
 

Alia

'Awa Grower/Collector
Kava is definitely new here in the US. I've turned a few people on to kava, but none consume it on a regular basis like I do. It is very hard for people to get past the initial offensive taste to get the effects. Then when they first drink it they do not get the effects it's a very hard sell. Once the do though they are hooked. It is just getting them past that point.

I stumbled on kava by complete accident. I was looking for alternatives to alcohol that were not addictive and wouldn't kill me. I didn't think anything like that existed, but it does. I am thankful every day I stumbled across a random redit article recommending kava for anxiety.



Which couldn't be farther from the truth. I've drank too much kava every now and then, but even when I'm krunked out my mind I still had complete control of myself and my cognitive thinking was not affected at all.
Absolutely agree and my point was that this person (who commented on the 'awa story in Honolulu paper) illustrates a total misunderstanding / lack of education on kava in general...and I suspect this is the majority view. We are communicating with ourselves and we are on the same page. But the vast majority are clueless.
 

jewalker7842

Kava Curious
I notice that people with this mentality are usually the ones that SHOULD be drinking whatever it is they're protesting against.
LOL isn't that the truth? I've been pretty krunk before and my mind was never mush. I had full control over my mind and body the entire time.
 

fait

Position 5 Hard Support
My group of friends and my family have known about my kava drinking for many years but I've only gotten a few of them to either try a cup or drink a kava session with me. The few that enjoy drinking kava are always drinking from my supply and they haven't had kava on their own. I'm sure a lot of people on this message board can relate.
 

KavaKween

Kava Curious
My group of friends and my family have known about my kava drinking for many years but I've only gotten a few of them to either try a cup or drink a kava session with me. The few that enjoy drinking kava are always drinking from my supply and they haven't had kava on their own. I'm sure a lot of people on this message board can relate.
Nearly everyone I've spoken with knows little or nothing about it. I've been an evangelist for about 5 years now. I tell everyone how much better the experience is vs alcohol as a social/relaxation beverage. The cost, accessibility, prep and even the taste makes it hard to convert family and friends. I don't think all of the liver toxicity warnings that pop up help much either. Only 1 family member has fully come on board, and I had to clarify those "warnings".

On the bright side, we now have 2 or 3 active Kava lounges in my metro area (that I'm aware of). Just a few years ago, we had none. Hopefully, once CV19 is behind us, we'll see even more activity.
 

Michael Nielsen

Kava Enthusiast
Well what is the kava industry doing about that?
Are they doing PR work?

As a costumer in Europe it does annoy me that quite a few vendors refuse to ship to Europe.
You don´t get any new costumers if you are giving people a hard time getting the stuff.

SEO work could be done to deal with the liver warnings.

If i wanted to introduce kava to others i would serve fresh kava or mocktails.

Its important that people gets a good first experience.
 

kasa_balavu

Yaqona Dina
As a costumer in Europe it does annoy me that quite a few vendors refuse to ship to Europe.
You don´t get any new costumers if you are giving people a hard time getting the stuff.
It's probably that way because vendors have been annoyed by customers pursuing chargebacks on their purchases after they've been confiscated by Customs.
This risk could be handled by using irrevocable payment methods like Western Union, Moneygram, or cryptocurrency for EU customers.
 

Nodsey

Kava Curious
It's probably that way because vendors have been annoyed by customers pursuing chargebacks on their purchases after they've been confiscated by Customs.
This risk could be handled by using irrevocable payment methods like Western Union, Moneygram, or cryptocurrency for EU customers.
It's 'buyer beware' as far as I'm concerned - it's my risk that customs will seize a shipment, and I've never tried to claim any refund when it happens personally. Hopefully a thing of the past soon though in Australia, with the supposed introduction of commercial imports by the end of this year...
 

TheKavaSociety

New Zealand
Kava Vendor
Shipping to Europe from outside the EU is often more trouble than it's worth, especially now with covid disruptions. It can take ages (at least relative to shipping within Europe), orders often get stuck with customs, sometimes bounce back etc and yet many customers are upset, blame the vendors for any delays or taxes, and often request (or indeed demand) refunds and discounts. It's all quite time consuming and can be rather stressful.
 
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kasa_balavu

Yaqona Dina
Hopefully a thing of the past soon though in Australia, with the supposed introduction of commercial imports by the end of this year...
Hopefully I'm wrong, but I'm under the impression that nothing will change as far as personal imports by mail. A handful of commercial importers will be permitted to import commercial quantities for retail sale within Australia.
 

Kalm with Kava

Kava Vendor
International shipping is such an absolute disaster. It's a gigantic hassle and it's often riddled with logistics issues that cause customer service complaints. We try our best to do it well, but there's a lot that's out of our control and most customers don't see it that way.

Hope that helps illuminate some of the problems.
 

Crunked

Proselytizer
Hopefully a thing of the past soon though in Australia, with the supposed introduction of commercial imports by the end of this year...
@Nodsey There is no indication the government has any intention of honouring the promise to permit a pilot program by December 2021. Nothing has happened to implement the promise since about October 2020. This is particularly disappointing given the Covid-19 pandemic and the oft reported effect of the lockdowns on mental health, including anxiety and depression. The government had an opportunity to do something to ameliorate this but did nothing. I should say the modus operandi of this government is to make big announcements on just about everything and then.....do nothing. ::explicativesz::
 

Nodsey

Kava Curious
I'm inclined to agree, details have been non existent since the budget allocation last year. I just came across this article though, which seems to suggest the minister involved in the process confirmed their commitment to it. I'll believe it when I see it though:

 
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