A new initiative in the processing and marketing of vincentian arrowroot starch is expected to be undertaken here shortly in a joint arrangement by the local arrowroot association and the regional marketing company, Winfresh and its subsidiary Vincyfresh, with the full support of the government of St. Vincent and the Grenadines.
This follows a recent meeting between representatives of the parties involved and the government, held at the conference room of the Ministry of Housing, under the chairmanship of Montgomery Daniel, Minister of Housing and Parliamentary Representative of the North Windward constituency, the major arrowroot-producing region.
According to a new release from representative of Winfresh, Renwick Rose the initial outcome of the discussions is a memorandum of understanding between the parties.
He said the MOU sets out two stages for action: (1) an immediate action plan aimed at bringing the arrowroot processing plant and its products up to acceptable standards for export through the Winfresh channel and (2) a medium-to-long-term plan where the parties will explore options for a joint venture between them to commercialize the operations of arrowroot industry of St. Vincent and the Grenadines.
Rose said the parties agree that this will require substantial investment to ensure that both the manufacturing plant itself and the arrowroot products meet the highest international food standards.
The release further outlines that the new initiative is aimed at a significant upgrading of the local arrowroot industry, once a major export earner, but which has encountered difficulties in recent times.