September 23, 2011
Banana stakeholders form committee to monitor fruit issues

Stakeholders in the struggling banana industry this week formed a committee to monitor the issues related to the fruit.{{more}}

The Consultative Committee was selected at a special meeting convened by the Ministry of Agriculture on Tuesday, September 20, at the Fisheries Complex in Kingstown.

The committee consists of the Chief Agricultural Officer, as well as a representative of the National Fair Trade Organization, WINFA, WINFARM, WINFRESH, St. Vincent and the Grenadines Producers, Agricultural Input Warehouse and WINCROP, among others.

Other members are expected to be incorporated into the committee, which was expected to meet yesterday, Thursday, September 22, at the Ministry of Agriculture conference room at Richmond Hill, with plans to meet subsequently on a monthly basis.

The call for the committee to be established was made by WINFAM General Manager Henry Keizer, who said that the current predicament that the industry is facing could have been avoided, had a functioning committee been in place.

“We would have taken the necessary preventative actions, rather than the curative actions that we are now looking towards.”

“The Banana Industry Act of 2009 makes provision for the establishment of a consultative committee… and such committee was more than sufficient to address the issues,” Keizer noted.

A chairman to lead the committee was to be selected by Agriculture Minister Montgomery Daniel.