Co-op Market Day showcases locally manufactured products, promotes networking
The government is advancing efforts to build the capacity of businesses countrywide by creating platforms for them to showcase their locally manufactured products.
In line with that aim, the Ministry of Labour-Department of Co-operatives hosted a Co-operatives Market Day, as Guyana joins the rest of the world to celebrate International Co-operatives Week.
The event was hosted at the ministry, Brickdam, Georgetown on Saturday.
This year, International Co-operatives Day is themed: ‘Building a sustainable future.’
Exhibitors at the event included Basdeo’s Dynasty, Dixie’s Punch De Creme, Jofa Products, Maliyah’s Kitchen, D’s Products, Guyana School of Agriculture, Guyana Marketing Corporation (GMC), National Agricultural Research and Extension Institute (NAREI), Agriculture and Innovation Entrepreneurship Programme (AIEP), Yarrowkabra Charcoal Burners’ Association, Bath Multi-purpose Co-operative Society Limited, Leisa’s Hair & Beauty Products, Sustainable Livelihood Marketing and Vegetable Producers co-operative Society Limited, Allison’s Hair & Skin Products, Amazon Authentics, Essence of Herbs, among others.
Products included cut roses, craft, skin and hair care products, seasoning, candles, vegetables and fruits, eggs, instant porridge mixtures, milk, wine, various sweet delicacies, salted fish (trout, snapper, shark), plantains, various plants, beans and peas, achar, and many others.
The Department of Public Information (DPI) spoke to several representatives of co-op societies who expressed their gratitude to the government for providing the space to sell their products.
Owner of D’s Body Therapy, Denise Grant expressed, “Because some people do not know that certain things are produced right here in Guyana when they come out here, they get to see the standards and the quality is very high…I’m very happy that I’ve been selected to be part of this event because I always like to capitalise on anything that will help me to promote my business. I’m happy for this opportunity.”
Treasurer of Sustainable Livelihood Marketing and Vegetable Producers Co-op Society Limited, Kevin DeYoung expressed that the market day initiative is beneficial for local entrepreneurs to network and showcase their products.
“Because for us, we are seeing more products that we can have on our shelves. It gives us new ideas on how we can package stuff and how we can get our things out there…We have made a lot of linkages. We are hoping that from this market day, many of our producers can be able to take their products to the next level.”
DeYoung said that the co-op society provides an opportunity for shade house users and producers to have an avenue to sell their products.
Its store, Alternative Mini-mart which is based in Linden, showcases locally manufactured and packaged products by persons not only in Linden but in Georgetown.
Proprietor of Basdeo Dynasty, Radhika Basdeo noted, “I am very privileged to be here this morning to participate in this event. It enables me to interact with my customers and it paves the way for networking. It also opens new marketing opportunities such as securing clients.”
Basdeo Dynasty specialises in mango achar, plantain flour, various salted fish, pepper sauce, and other commodities.
Alexis Reese of Eastgate Products highlighted that “The thing about the exhibition is that you get to exhibit your products. You get to show the world what is being made in Guyana using our local products.”
Proprietor, Dixie Jordan of Dixie’s ‘Punch De Crème’ happily noted, “I feel awesome to have the opportunity to come here today to showcase what we have at Dixie’s ‘Punch De Crème’. It gives us the opportunity to meet more customers.”
Jordan added that her business manufactures crème liqueur using products from Guyana, “at the moment, we have three different flavours. We have the original, which is vanilla. Then, we have the coffee lovers and the last one is the capadulla.”
Assistant Manager of the Agro-processing facility at GSA, Stacy McDonald highlighted that the facility, which has various value-added products, sources agricultural produce from the crop farm.
“We are delighted to be here because our mission is to support agriculture development. We have our livestock farm representing here, where we have our poultry products and cow’s milk.”
Representative of Richard’s 100% Pure Honey, Kishan Ramjattan while lauding the event, expressed, “I love any participation when it comes to local markets with our local people.”
Meanwhile, Minister of Labour, Joseph Hamilton underscored that the concept of co-op societies relates to helping to develop communities in a sustainable manner, while noting that, “The intention is to showcase what co-op societies are doing and what they can do.”