A new initiative in the processing and marketing of Vincentian arrowroot starch is expected to be undertaken shortly in a joint arrangement by the local Arrowroot Association and the regional marketing company, WINFRESH and its subsidiary, Vincyfresh, with 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.
The initial outcome of the discussions is a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the parties.
The MOU sets out two stages for action including an immediate action plan aimed at bringing the arrowroot processing plant and its products up to acceptable standards for export through the WINFRESH channels; and a medium- to long-term plan where the parties will explore options for a joint venture between them to commercialise the operations of the arrowroot industry of St Vincent and the Grenadines.
According to Renwick Rose of WINFRESH, 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.