Designer becomes baker; new herbal contraceptive launched as ‘UNCAPPED’ returns

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By Kurt Campbell

Kurt@newsroom.gy

UncappeD Marketplace – the expo for small agro-processors – returned this year following a two-year hiatus and it brought with it several success stories which demonstrated that although these businesses were hurt financially during the COVID-19 pandemic, they were not idle.

With a focus on the outputs of Guyana’s agro-processing industry, the event, organised by the Guyana Manufacturing and Services Association (GMSA,) started on Saturday and will continue on Sunday at the Providence National Stadium, East Bank Demerara.

Some 107 businesses are participating and among them was a hairdresser who is now a pepper sauce producer; a designer who has become a baker and an herbal doctor, who launched her herbal contraceptive pills for women and men.

This year’s event is headed for success through good sponsorship and the participation of local businessmen and women. The expo also saw attendance of regional trade officials with some 45 of the participating businesses listed as “ready for export.”

The story of how the pandemic birthed new ideas and allow space for business growth repeated itself as the News Room engaged exhibitors on Saturday.

Oneetta Waldron, who owns and operates Green Thumbs, which offers mostly ornamental plants, said she welcomes the exposure but said her recovery from the pandemic is showing good signs.

Oneetta Waldron owner Green Thumbs [Photo: News Room/ April 30, 2022]
“While we didn’t have occasions to sell the plants, the ones we had in the yard multiplied and you can see the evidence here today, we have a lot to offer,” Waldron explained.

Meanwhile, Dawn Skepmire, a herbal doctor who runs her own business – Dawndelion – used the occasion to launch her herbal contraceptive for males and females.

“It doesn’t matter which partner takes it; it is effective the same way. You take two every day for the first month and then one a day as a supplement. It is effective because I tested it for a long time before I launched it today,” Skepmire explained.

Dawn Skipmire holds up one of her herbal supplements [Photo: News Room/ April 30, 2022]
She praised UncappeD for the opportunity afforded to her even as she pushed her other products available to treat the 12 main organs of the body.

“It helps small businesses to really get established and people see and know who you are and not only that, they spread the word about your products so it is very good with uncapped.”

DESIGNER BECOMES BAKER

There were other inspirational stories; well-known and long-time designer Carol Fraser has now become a baker, saying she is just as creative in the kitchen.

Participating in uncapped for the third time, Fraser said she was now promoting healthy eating and healthy lifestyles

She had on sale her cinnamon whole grain bread and high fiber bread.

“I’m catering for persons who have diabetes and you want to indulge in something still satisfying. The bread has no sugar only honey,” she said.

Carol Fraser’s breads and cakes

Fraser also gave birth to the idea of cinnamon buns during the Easter holidays which she has packaged and now retails and also her black cake was on sale.

“It has a shelf life until Christ comes.”

Another well-known and long-time designer Sonia Noel was also at the expo promoting her brands and as she puts it, “not just fashion.”

She was also introducing her new “I am collection” which offers personal and home items with affirmations.

“Sometimes, we don’t think we are enough and it is important that you have that environment when home sitting to know that we were all made uniquely with everything inside,” Noel explained.

Part proceeds from sales of the ‘I Am collection’ will go towards funding her breadbasket initiative.

Ramsay Ali, Vice President of the GMSA [Photo: News Room/ April 30, 2022]
The News Room also caught up with Ramsay Ali, Vice President of the GMSA who said that now that the pandemic has subsided, the association will move ahead with plans to take UncappeD to other Caribbean countries.

“We are looking now by the end of this year to visit one Caribbean country and eventually to take it to the USA and target the diaspora of Guyana.

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