Kingston, Jamaica –Jamaica Promotions Corporation (JAMPRO) in partnership with Jamaica’s Ministry of Agriculture & Fisheries and Fresh Produce Consortium (FPC) will be leading a Jamaican delegation on a fresh produce trade mission to London, England from February 10-15, 2015. The mission aims to promote Jamaican fresh produce for export to the UK market.
The delegation which includes The Honourable Derrick Kellier, Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries, Donovan Stanberry, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture & Fisheries and JAMPRO Vice President of Export and Market Development, Robert Scott will meet with buyers and stakeholders in the UK market to encourage export of Jamaican fresh produce. The mission will culminate in the FPC’s Annual Gala Dinner at the Savoy Hotel in London on February 14, where exotic Jamaican produce will be served to over 300 leaders and potential clients in the UK Fresh Produce Sector.
In 2011, JAMPRO’s European Regional Office created the fresh produce export initiative to target European importers of exotic fruits and vegetables. The initiative has contributed to a major increase in fresh produce exports from Jamaica to Europe. The agency also developed a strong relationship with the UK’s leading fresh produce association, the FPC. With support from Caribbean Export Development Agency, JAMPRO invited the FPC to Expo Jamaica 2014 on an inward market visit, resulting in new contracts for Jamaican fresh produce exporters and valuable support for this trade mission to the UK market.
JAMPRO and the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries are working in concert with farmers and exporters to secure contracts for the export of sweet potato, yam, and mangoes as well as facilitating the first delivery of Jamaican bananas to the UK since 2009. Laurence Jones, JAMPRO European Regional Manager stated that there is more to be done to ensure that more Jamaican fresh produce reaches its destination, ”JAMPRO is pleased with the significant increase in exports to Europe, but we are aware of challenges facing Jamaican exporters of fresh produce. We have observed an increase in the number of ‘Interceptions’ at European ports by fresh produce regulators because some produce does not meet regulatory standards. JAMPRO is working closely with the UK regulatory (DEFRA) and the Jamaican Ministry of Agriculture Plant and Quarantine Department to address this issue and implement an action plan to reduce these occurrences.”
JAMPRO has continuously targeted the European market for the export of fresh produce and other products and will continue its partnership with the Fresh Produce Consortium. The agency’s European Regional Office in London looks forward to receiving enquiries from Jamaican fresh produce exporters, facilitating new export contracts on their behalf, and bring more Jamaican fresh produce to market.