Agro-Processing Factory Opens in Yallahs


Double Deuce Jamaica Limited, a new agro-processing facility, was officially opened in St. Thomas on Friday (Nov.16).
Owned by James Chong and his wife Marvette, the facility, situated at the Yallahs Industrial Complex at Poor Man’s Corner, will process ackee, breadfruit slices, fruit punch as well as carrot, mango and callaloo juices. More than 70 persons will be employed by the company during the height of the ackee season.
Senior Consultant in the Ministry of Agriculture, Dr. Omer Thomas, who was the guest speaker at the opening ceremony, encouraged farmers in the parish to increase production to support the facility.
He said that the country should not have to import raw material to support agro-processing facilities. “We have the farms, we have the climate, we have the people, we have the policy. It is for us now to put all of these things together to ensure that our agro- processing sub sector strives and makes an even greater contribution to the GDP (gross domestic product) of this country,” he stated.
The agro-processing sub sector is a major contributor to the economy, with $2.4 billion worth of jerk sauce and other condiments exported over the last four years.
Turning to strategies being undertaken by the Ministry to increase productivity, Dr. Thomas informed that focus is being placed on greenhouse technology, whereby condiments, spices, herbs, medicinal crops could be grown under protected conditions.
“It is with this type of agriculture that we can assure ourselves of the supply of raw material,” he stated, noting that the Rural Agricultural Development Authority’s (RADA) extension service will be “beefed up to support the technological demand of modern day agriculture.”
Minister without Portfolio in the Office of the Prime Minister and Member of Parliament for Western St. Thomas, James Robertson, welcomed the opening of Double Deuce. He pointed out that St. Thomas has the land space to accommodate more facilities of the type.”As you came in this industrial park, you saw open land where we need to build factories. We have the capacity and we have a dedicated workforce,” he stated.
Minister of State for Industry, Investment and Commerce, Michael Stern assisted the proprietors in cutting the ribbon to open Double Deuce. Later, the Chong family took the government officials and business leaders on a tour of the factory.
During the ceremony, the Chongs presented six computers to the Yallahs Fire Station and Grant’s Pen Primary and Yallahs High schools.

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