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A previous staging of Food Matters Live (Photo courtesy of Caribbean Export Development Agency)

Four C’bean health foods firms head to Food Matters Live

A previous staging of Food Matters Live (Photo courtesy of Caribbean Export Development Agency)

Four Caribbean health-food brands will join international innovators in the food ingredients market at Food Matters Live from October 13–14, 2020.

With assistance from Caribbean Export Development Agency — which worked closely with the European Union under the11th EDF Regional Private Sector Development Programme — the companies have secured participation at the leading food, health and nutrition event where they will aim to maximise on the increase in demand for natural products.

“We were concerned that this event would not go ahead due to the current pandemic, so we are pleased that it will still be held virtually,” Dr Damie Sinanan, manager for competitiveness and export promotion at Caribbean Export, explained.

Dr Damie Sinanan, manager for competitiveness and export promotion, Caribbean Export Development Agency. (File photo)

“Food Matters Live is an innovative exhibition, bringing together essential players in the food and drinks market across the world. We believe Caribbean brands will be able to leverage this chance to showcase their products and get people talking about what they have to offer,” he added.

Among the regional companies participating are Caribbean Cure from Trinidad and Tobago; Shavuot International and Cold Bush Organics from Jamaica; and Belizean company Naledo, which manufactures the world’s first turmeric paste.

Opportunity for growth

According to Allied Market Research, the global natural food and drinks had a market value of US$79.1 million in 2016; by 2023 it should reach US$191.9 million. That’s a compound annual growth rate of 17.6 per cent.

“We believe Caribbean brands will be able to leverage this chance to showcase their products and get people talking about what they have to offer.”

— Dr Damie Sinanan, manager for competitiveness and export promotion, Caribbean Export Development Agency

Caribbean Export believes, therefore, that Food Matters Live is an excellent opportunity for Caribbean suppliers operating in the natural products space. Furthermore, the event provides an ideal platform to demonstrate the Caribbean’s diverse range of innovators who are “blazing a trail in the natural products sphere”, the agency said.

Significantly, the exhibition also attracts a wide range of premier global brands, retailers and food services companies while offering “a curated experience for participants”.

As a result, the agency expects the participants will gain increased exposure and realise a rise in demand for their products following the event. Similar businesses within the region also stand to benefit.

“Since the global pandemic, we’ve experienced a surge in demand for our natural healthy products from our international customers,” Joel Harris, marketing director at Shavuot International, shared.

“At our core, we are always ‘Harvesting Goodness for our consumers, communities and our team’. We’re very pleased to be able to meet with international buyers to increase our exports and penetration of overseas markets,” he added.

Deputy director and legal counsel at Jamaica Intellectual Property Office (JIPO) Marcus Goffe (left) and Joel Harris, marketing director of castor oil manufacturers Shavuot Farms, engage in a discussion at Jamaica Promotion Corporation’s Castor Industry Forum in 2016. (Photo: Jamaica Observer)