From food to craft: Guyanese products heading to Barbados ‘agrofest’

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Guyana and Barbados are working together to boost agricultural production and safeguard the Caribbean’s food security agenda and as part of these efforts, local businesses will be marketing their products at the island’s ‘agrofest’ in May.

Head of the Guyana Manufacturing and Services Association (GMSA) Rafeek Khan said that the Barbadian government has a growing interest in procuring more Guyanese products.

Talks have been ongoing for months on finding a space to showcase these products to the Barbadian people. Those talks, he said, concluded in an agreement to have a Guyanese delegation participate in the island’s agrofest, scheduled for May 26 to 29.

“We’re expected to have a wide variety of companies in various sectors, participating in their agrofest,” Khan told the News Room recently.

President of Guyana Manufacturing and Services Association (centre) and the GMSA’s Executive Director Nizam Hassan (second right) on a tour of shops at Pelican Village in Barbados recently (Photo: Export Barbados/ Facebook)

The intention is to duplicate the duty-free shop setting at the Umana Yana in Georgetown during the recently concluded International Energy Conference and Expo. That setup, Khan noted, attracted scores of locals and foreigners and was able to effectively market numerous locally-made products.

And according to the GMSA Head, the Guyanese products that will be on display in Barbados will include arts and craft, manufactured goods and fresh fruits and vegetables.

Importantly, though, he noted that GMSA will continue to engage Guyana’s government on logistics support to enable local participation in the agrofest.

Agrofest is Barbados’ premier agricultural exhibition, allowing local, regional and international producers to showcase their products. This exhibition is set to make a comeback this year after a brief hiatus owed to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The private sector’s inclusion in this exhibition came after a GMSA delegation visited Barbados in March and discussed numerous area of interest, including the development and expansion of the countries’ agricultural sectors.

Alongside discussions about Guyana’s participation in the agrofest, the News Room understands that there were some talks on preparations for the return of the Guyana Exposition- popularly called GuyExpo.

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