Young agriculturists venturing into agro-processing

Young agriculturists involved in the Agriculture and Innovation Entrepreneurship Programme (AIEP) are now venturing into the agro-processing industry, as they are processing produce cultivated through the shade house initiative.

Pepper jelly, made from sweet and hot peppers that are available in two variants – hot and mild; cauliflower rice, carrot jams and marmalades are also being produced under the innovative agriculture programme.

Marketing Manager of One Guyana Agriculture Inc., Clebrt Wade

Marketing Director of One Guyana Agriculture Inc., Clebrt Wade made the disclosure in an interview with the Department of Public Information (DPI) at Mon Repos, East Coast Demerara on Sunday.

He explained that products that do not meet the market standards are utilised for agro-processing.

“So even though these products are wholesome, they’re healthy and good for us, they don’t necessarily meet the standard … what we do, we take them and inject them into agro-processing … We’re showcasing that you can be different and you can take what you have, what is produced locally and you can create a whole new different product line,” Wade explained.

Chief Executive Officer, One Guyana Agriculture Inc, Teesha Mangra-Singh

Meanwhile, Chief Executive Officer of One Guyana Agriculture Inc., Teesha Mangra-Singh said the response to the new line of products has been good so far.

The AIEP initiative was launched by President, Dr Mohamed Irfaan Ali in January 2022, and is intended to stimulate and promote economic growth and improve the lives of young agriculturists.

A sample of the carrot marmalade produced by youths involved in the Agriculture and Innovation Entrepreneurship Programme

It is also contributing to CARICOM’s target of reducing its large food import bill by 25 per cent by the year 2025, with Guyana leading the initiative.

More than 100 young graduates of the University of Guyana and the Guyana School of Agriculture are engaged in shade house farming by cultivating crops that are non-native to Guyana, such as broccoli, cauliflower, carrots romaine and iceberg lettuce.