In the wake of a national peak in the production of plantains, the Ministry of Agriculture through the Farmers’ Support Company (FSC) has created a credit line of up to $10,000 for Agro-Processors involved in Plantain chip production.
The ministry says according to statistics received, this year has seen the largest production of plantains in St Vincent and the Grenadines in over 30 years and that it believes the establishment of this credit line will ease the current glut on the market.
Currently, the FSC provides loans to farmers from a $12 million revolving fund facility which has seen some 2218 applicants to date. It has been noted that a large number of the farmers that receive credit from the FSC engage in plantain production. There are an estimated over 1000 acres of plantains in SVG.
Over the last three (3) weeks, the FSC exported two (2) 40ft containers of plantains to Trinidad and Tobago and the United States of America (USA) and a sample to the UK. This is in addition to a number of pallets that are exported weekly by local traders/traffickers.
Minister of Agriculture Saboto Caesar is encouraging all Agro-Processors involved in Plantain chip production to contact the Ministry for more information on the loan program available.