February 25, 2005

WINFA at Washington meetings

Local farmer, Anton “Tookie” Bowman, a long- standing member of the local chapter of WINFA and executive member of the National Fair Trade Committee is currently in Washington D.C. Bowman is attending a two- day North American Preparatory Seminar for the upcoming 2nd International Banana Conference (IBC 2) to be held in Brussels, April 28- 30, 2005. {{more}}

Bowman is representing WINFA at the Seminar, which is the final in a series of regional workshops to prepare participants for the April Conference. Previous regional seminars were held in Latin America in November (Nioka Abbott was the WINFA representative) and Europe (Wilberforce Emmanuel then being the WINFA participant) earlier this month. The Caribbean Seminar was hosted by WINFA in St. Vincent and the Grenadines in January.

At the Washington meeting Bowman is scheduled to make a presentation giving the perspective of small farmers on the banana industry. He is also due, along with other Caribbean participants in the Seminar, to hold meetings with members of the US Congress and representatives of the influential Trans Africa lobbying group on matters related to the banana industry.

Meanwhile plans for a campaign to publicize the 2nd International Banana Conference were finalized at a meeting of representatives of farmer’s organizations and banana companies in the Windward Islands, held at WINFA headquarters, Kingstown, last Saturday (Feb. 19). The meeting was a follow- up to the Caribbean Seminar, held at Buccama- on- the- Bay on January 22nd-23rd, and is aimed at publicizing the Conference, ensuring strong Caribbean representation and ensuring the full co- ordination of input into the conference.