─ Central Packaging Facility celebrates 21 years in operation
The New Guyana Marketing Corporation’s (GMC) on Wednesday commissioned 13 motorcycles that will be added to its fleet of vehicles used to target and better serve farmers and agro-processors.
The motorcycles were procured at a cost of $2,793,860 and will be used to service farmers and agro-processors in Regions Three, Four, Five, and Six, specifically those in far-off areas.
While delivering remarks at the exercise, Agriculture Minister Zulfikar Mustapha while urging extension officers to utilize the bikes for their intended purposes, said that government recognizes the importance of properly equipping officers to deliver the services required.
“We recognize the importance of giving the necessary tools to our staff so that they can deliver the type of services we need them to deliver to our farmers. The GMC has and will continue to play a very important role in agriculture development in Guyana, especially with the interest government is placing on agro-processing and securing markets for our farmers’ produce. Today, with the work we’ve been doing so far and the resources we have been making available, we are seeing the agro-processing sector in our country is moving apace like the other agencies,” Minister Mustapha said.
Minister Mustapha disclosed that the government will also be expending some $79 million to further develop the New GMC’s Central Packaging Facility, adding that other major investments have already been made to establish a number of agro-processing and packaging facilities countrywide.
Highlighting the fact that, globally, value-added commodities are more widely consumed and attract better market prices, Minister Mustapha said that local farmers need to utilize more value-added methods of production.
“We cannot go into the Caribbean with primary produce. We have to add value to ours and here is where the GMC, the Central Packaging Facility comes into play. They will have to ensure that they lead that exercise so that we can bring the exporters and producers and add value to their produce,” Minister Mustapha iterated.
GMC’s General Manager, Ms. Teshawna Lall said the achievement will enlarge the agency’s database and increase the efficiency of data collection.
She noted too that more market linkages will be created for farmers, exporters, and other stakeholders, boosting their economic capacity.
“These motorcycles will serve Wakenaam Island, West Bank Demerara, East Bank Essequibo, Laluni Highway, East Bank Demerara, Branch Road Blairmont, East Bank Berbice, Crabwood Creek, and Black Bush Polder,” Ms. Lall underscored.