Developing spice industry.
DEVELOPING SPICE INDUSTRY. Jamaica's Ministry of Agriculture
and Fisheries is starting a spice development program, which will target
a number of crops for expansion and export, reports JIS (Dec. 30, 2010).
"Jamaica has a reputation for quality spices and we are trying to
develop a spice industry," said general manager of the Export
Division, Sylburn Thomas. "We are getting the right planting
material to introduce to the farmers, doing site selection in the right
geographic locations and, over time, the processing facilities," he
added. Assistance is being provided for farmers to increase the
production of ginger. "We are also looking at a nursery program in
which we supply disease-free planting material to the industry so we can
combat the ginger rhizome rot disease," Thomas said. He said the
government is providing funding for the research and commercial
production of the planting material, which will then be sold to the
farmers at a subsidized rate. The Export Division is also discussing
with suppliers to set up a centralized processing facility for ginger,
including a steam distillation plant as well as a slicing machine.
"We are also looking at washers and a steam dryer so that way, we
can maintain the quality and integrity of the product and generate
greater value for the farmers in the country," Thomas said. He
noted that the Jamaican ginger is known globally and while some of the
largest spice manufacturers in the US, Europe and Japan are familiar
with the product, "markets in Japan, India, United Kingdom and
Germany seem to have a greater preference for the Jamaican ginger."