Sago oven pottery production in the Raja Ampat Islands of the far western Pacific
This paper is the first ethnographic description of ceramic sago oven production in the Raja Ampat Islands of West Papua. These rectilinear ovens are widespread throughout eastern Indonesia, used to bake sago flour into small ‘cakes,’ which can be stored during times of food shortage or used in exchange. Little is known about the emergence of this technology in the past and so this modern baseline serves as an important link to understand production sequences in the archaeological record. This record will be central to understanding sago processing in the deeper past, a key part of a wider system of forest exploitation in the far western Pacific Islands.