The adage goes: “People eat everywhere. So you can always find food in inhabited places.” While this is true, people eat differently in different places because different things are available.
In Fiji the following are readily available in large towns:
- Bread, flour
- Pasta, ramen
- Canned meat
- Fish in all forms
The selection of fresh fruit and vegetables is usually quite limited and the quality mediocre. Tomatoes, okra, cucumbers, egg plants, pineapples, mangoes, bananas, and peppers are usually available. Canned vegetables are limited in supply and selection, so bring more than you think you will use.
Dairy products, particularly butter and cheese, are usually sold-out, so stock up whenever they are plentiful.
The following foods are expensive and/or difficult to find and you should bring a whole season’s supply:
- Coffee, except for instant which is readily available
- Pre-made/package sauces
- Snacks like potato chips
- Crackers, unless you like curry-spice on them
Alcohol is subject to duty, so we recommend bringing only your quota. However premium brands of hard liquor are obscenely expensive, for example 750ml of Bailey’s is F$120 (US$65). The only hard liquor at reasonable prices is the local rum, vodka, and gin.
Complicating matters further, most boats spend extended periods away from the population centres. In the towns groceries are cheap. In the minor islands, like the Yasawas, there is very little food available for purchase. We visited two towns where there was no cash economy so we could not purchase any food. Even in the popular remote areas, like Musket Cove, groceries are ridiculously expensive. So expect to eat from preserved foods more than you would elsewhere. We recommend buying your food in Suva, Lautoka, Nadi, Savusavu, Taveuni, or Labasa.