Contrary to popular belief, Papua New Guinea has domesticated several cultivars of Papua New Guinea kava or "Kau" as it is called locally, from its wild predecessor Piper witchmanii. This cultivar is known as Madang Short, an "ISA" cultivar, which is renown throughout PNG and parts of Fiji for its piney taste and strong, relaxing, long lasting effects. Our Madang Short consistently tests between 9 and 11% total Kavalactones with a non-noble 254 chemotype meaning that it is high in Dihydromethysitcin (DHM), Dihydrokavain (DHK), which are 2 and 4 times the potency of their single bonded counterparts methysticin and Kavain. Kavain and DHK both have local anesthetic properties however DHM has a much stronger sedating and sleep-inducing effect. DHK has a relative analgesic effect stronger by dosage than that of acetylsalicylic acid (aspirin) making it useful for minor aches and pains. The predominance of DHK and DHM accounts for this cultivar's more sedating and muscle relaxing qualities, its delayed effects, as well as the lassitude of effects (several hours) compared to noble daily drinking kava.
Our Papua Kava is also surprisingly low in Flavokavains for being a non-noble Kava. According to a recent report entitled, "Scientific and Legal Assistance for the Development of a quality and safety standard for kava production in the Pacific region," found on pages 48 and 49 HERE, ISA Kava from Papua New Guinea, although it is a non-noble chemotype, contains only 0.15%-0.2% Flavokavain B, which is only VERY slightly higher than Hawaiian Noble chemotypes such as Nene (0.12%) and Moi (0.10%), along with several other Noble Chemotypes from other Kava drinking regions. When you consider that you only need to drink half as many shells as many noble varieties, you will actually be consuming much less Flavokavain B than some of those 3% Nene or 4% Moi kava's that are floating around out there. If the reason for abstaining from non-noble kava is due to a concern over flav