Drinking Kava in Australia
Where is it going:
It’s an exciting time for people drinking kava in Australia. The Australian Government rolled out the Phase 2 trial in January 2022. Since the Australian market has seen kava products flood onto the market. A wide choice in variety, country of origin and quality is available. Some kava is selling as low at $95 per kg with some vendors selling at over $200. If you are drinking kava in Australia in July 2022, there are over one hundred products available to you (just ensure that you always buy the best kava). This is a far cry from prior to the Phase 2 trial where kava was illegal and only some cowboys’ operators were selling it illegally for exorbitant prices.
The Australian kava market is still very immature, with the pacific island root, not widely known throughout Australia. Obviously with a large Pacific Island community, there was an immediate uptake, but general awareness of kava is still low in the wider community. However, the USA was very much like this in the early 00’s. 20 years later there is now over two hundred commercial kava bars, hundreds of online vendors and kava products sold throughout stores in America.
So how will Australia grow to maturity parallel to the USA? We explore four key areas we believe will help grow the understanding of kava in Australia:
Pacific Island Community and SWP Workers.
As kava is now legal, the Pacific Island community is ecstatic to be able to extol the virtues of kava. All this without the hindrance of drug scheduling legislation. Subsequently, we are already seeing many Pacific Island leaders and influencers openly discuss and promote kava. Suffice to say, this is being done through socials and like channels.
Moreover, the Seasonal Workers Program in Australia means that there are over 20,000 Pacific Island workers in Australia. Naturally, their social tonic of choice is kava. Whilst working in remote areas of the country, Australians employing and working with SWP workers are being exposed to kava. So, just by drinking kava in Australia, they are helping to spread awareness of it.
The Wellness community have long known of the benefits of kava but were unable to promote it. However, this has changed in key wellness hubs such as the Northern Rivers area of NSW. We’re aware that kava is now becoming a steadfast part of any health and wellness businesses client offering. Coupled with this is the supplement and or application in physically demanding sports. Australia Kava Shop say they have five combat sports clients who are using kava for a social tonic, as opposed to alcohol.
In the late nineties, an enterprising young man set up the first commercial kava bar in Baton Rouge, Florida. Prior to this, the US Pacific Island community had established its own community kava lounges. However, this was the first attempt at bringing kava to a wider audience. Now, 25 years later, kava bars are in every major USA city, even as far as Anchorage in Alaska.
Similarly, we are now seeing small kava bars pop up around Australia. Sure, they might seem small and not as sophisticated as some of the USA kava bars. Yet, they are breaking important ground in Australia.
We have listed below some of the Australian Kava Bars.
KAVA BAR SHOP 2, 76-86 QUEENS ROAD, SLACKS CREEK, LOGAN QLD. Ph: 0481 785 227
BLACSTONE WEAR – 3/60 VULTURE STREET, WEST END, BRISBANE. Ph: 0449 524 244
Drinking Kava in Australia faces its next major hurdle when the Australian Government does its Phase 2 review in 2024. It is paramount that all commercial entities and people who drink kava in Australia be aware that:
- Any problem that arises through inferior quality kava and or abuse can jeopardize the review;
- Subsequently, land kava back on the Office of Drug Control scheduled drug list.
However, let’s assume that the market matures without the advent of any major hiccup. As such, drinking kava in Australia for the near future should be a sure thing.