Erica’s country style ready for the world
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September 25, 2009
Erica’s country style ready for the world

When the next edition of ‘Zest Fest’ takes place in Albuquerque, New Mexico, next year, Erica McIntosh says that she will be ready to showcase more of her products.{{more}}

McIntosh, fresh from the 2009 staging of the Chile Magazine sponsored festival, spoke to SEARCHLIGHT on Wednesday about her experience.

She entered one product in the competition: Erica’s Country Style Hot Sauce, and placed second in the Condiment Table Sauce category.

Already planning for 2010, she indicated that she would be entering more products where she believes she would be more successful.

“Next time around I certainly shall, because I also have the fruity sauce which is the mango salsa. I could have also entered it as a salsa, and I could have also entered my jellies; my pepper jellies and my passion pepper jellies, which I think would have won. Also, with my tamarind sauce, I could have entered in the Asian stir fry sauce section.”

Erica’s Country Style’s pepper sauce was one of the few Caribbean products which competed at the festival, which saw participants from all over the world competing in more than 75 categories.

The show, held in Fort Worth, Texas, was also an opportunity for McIntosh to showcase many of her 22 items, which she said received rave reviews.

She received 1,000 labels to put on her product that indicate she placed second at the festival.

“Soon after the presentation of ribbons on the first night, my booth was just crowded with people wanting to get their hands on my product,” McIntosh beamed.

Although this was her first competition, McIntosh has been an ambassador for Agro based products from St. Vincent and the Grenadines for many years.

She has showcased her products in many parts of the world and will next month be heading to Caguas, Puerto Rico, for another such event, as part of an OECS delegation.

McIntosh indicated that her US trip, along with others like it, would not have been possible had it not been for the assistance of the Centre for Enterprise Development (CED).

Manager of Training and Education at the CED Jacintha James, speaking to Searchlight, noted that offering assistance such as this to their clients was part of the Business Gateway initiative.

She said her institution was excited and proud to sponsor McIntosh and her products, and were happy about her success in the competition.

“It goes to show that we have products of high quality here in St. Vincent and the Grenadines.”

James indicated that the CED had sponsored other persons to participate in similar events, and used the opportunity to invite other clients to draw such events to the attention of the CED, if they require assistance.

As for McIntosh, she believes that her exceptional achievement in the Texas Zest Fest is going to have a huge impact on her sales.

With agents in Barbados, Tortola, New York and Miami, she expects an increased demand from the American market. (JJ)