Tazmein Coates-Crawford, using her story to inspire other agro-processors

Being a mother of three, a wife and an ago-processor can be taxing, but Ms. Tazmein Coates-Crawford is certain that sharing her story can inspire other women to follow their dreams of becoming agro-processors – a dream the New Guyana Marketing Corporation (New GMC) is dedicated to supporting.

Tazmein started her agro-processing business, Lionel’s Products, after she gave birth to her third child. She said she used coconut oil on her baby’s skin as a moisturiser and found that it was good and decided to pursue a coconut oil business is a great venture. 

Before becoming an agro-processor, Tazmein worked in the marketing field. Initially, she desired to become a lawyer, but because of financial constraints, working as soon as she left high school was her only option at that time.

Tazmein worked for a seafood company where she marketed seafood products to places that purchase large quantities. Subsequently, a friend, Tazmein said, told her about “Guyana Enjoy the Mix” a magazine that featured stories on the Cricket World Cup that was happening in Guyana in 2007. The mother of three sold advertisements for the company and found that she was “really good at marketing” and also knew that she had an inspiring story to tell, so she decided to start her own business.

“…I enjoyed that and later started doing my own marketing. I would visit or call television stations to find out the cost for airtime because I thought that I had a good story to tell and I knew that if I am able to find sponsors for my own show, I would be able to motivate women with my past experiences,” She said. 

Due to her persistence, Tazmein now has her own television show called “TLC” where she not only markets her agro-processing business, but highlights the work of other agro-processors through interviews, advertisements and other marketing opportunities.  

Tazmein, like other local agro-processors, has benefitted from the support of the New GMC.   

Over the years she received assistance from GMC’s Agri-Business Development Unit and was able to properly develop her product, labels and packaging to a high standard where it will be better positioned to compete on the local market.

Tazmein participated in New GMC’s Farmers’ Market day and other exhibitions where she was able to market her product.

In addition to that, her products were given shelf-space in The Guyana Shop where she held sampling sessions during the ‘Month of Bride’ promotion. 

Tazmein wants to encourage women to become entrepreneurs, noting that “women having their own business is an excellent idea. I would encourage more women to get into business and support other female entrepreneurs.” 

Lionel’s Products can be found in The Guyana Shop and at all the leading supermarkets in Guyana.