The Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries, is working closely with the Ministry of Industry, Investment and Commerce, to maximise the use of equipment at Jamaica Exotic Flavours and Essences, in Bull Savannah, St. Elizabeth.
After a tour of the factory on April 27, Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries, Dr. Christopher Tufton told JIS News that the Government has a substantial stake in the factory, which falls under the Ministry of Industry, Investment and Commerce.
Operations at Jamaica Exotic Flavours and Essences began in 2008, with the aim of using fruits and vegetables grown in Jamaica to create flavours and essences.
Participant in the Jamaica Business Development Corporation’s (JBDC’s) workshop on banana fibre and paper, Everard Powell, places fibre extracted from the banana plant in the sun to dry. The workshop was held at the JBDC’s Incubator and Resource Centre, Marcus Garvey Drive, Kingston.
“This is a facility that is substantially owned by the Government of Jamaica and we have been working on a programme with this entity to integrate the extraction of flavours from those crops that are growing in and around this area, such as mangoes, melons and cantaloupes, that at times do not suit the market, because they may be smaller than the normal size,” Dr. Tufton noted.
“We are working with the Ministry of Education, under the School Feeding Programme, to integrate some local juices, to benefit our farmers. This facility is going to be used to extract the flavours and essences and then re-integrate that into the production of juices. It will allow for a more nutritious drink and it will utilise the production efforts of the farmers, which is very important to the process,” the Minister added.
Meanwhile, Managing Director of Jamaica Exotic Flavours and Essences, Mr. Anthony Freckleton, said that the entity is working closely with the Government and agro processing stakeholders in Jamaica to integrate more locally produced purees and essences into many formulations.
“We are working with small and large companies here to produce flavoured water – watermelon flavoured water – along with other flavoured water, so that we can substitute the imported inputs in our beverages in Jamaica,” he said.
Jamaica Business Development Corporation’s (JBDC’s) banana fibre and paper workshop participants (from left), Fernette Williams, Norris Henry and Everard Powell, show off a lamp made from banana paper. They were taking part in a JBDC two-day workshop at the Corporation’s Incubator and Resource Centre, Marcus Garvey Drive, Kingston.
He noted that Jamaica imports significant amounts of mango puree and tomato paste, and the aim is to replace, where possible, imported ingredients with locally produced ones.
Mr. Freckleton pointed out that all products developed by Jamaica Exotic Flavours and Essences exceed international standards and that the company boasts a complement of qualified employees.
He emphasised that the entity is working closely with the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries and the Rural Agricultural Development Authority (RADA), to end periods of glut that affect the sector.