Lack of raw materials is threatening the production and services at Dominica’s Bello factory.
Managing Director of Bello Michael Fagan says insufficient production from farmers is posing a major threat to its products particularly coffee and hot peppers.
He says while the company will give Dominica priority, it may have to import its raw materials from overseas.
“We will still have to supplement raw materials from outside of Dominica if we are not getting but we want to maintain the quality and we get the best quality from Dominica. A major threat to us right now is with our coffee product where much of the coffee might be going out the back door to the French island but we are willing to work with the farmers on price. We feel that we should be given priority because we are right here in Dominica,” he said
Fagan says the company has developed new markets for several of its products and is urging local farmers here to increase its production to accommodate the new venture. “I just want to appeal to the farming community, as a partner, that we are interested in paying [for] peppers and the same goes for yellow limes and Arabica coffee beans as well as plantains and breadfruit. We are re-building our market outside of Dominica and we’re looking forward to working with the farming community to get increased raw material supply,” he said.
He continued, “We want to maintain the integrity and the quality of the product and we get the best product from Dominica. We are willing to supplement initially, but the long term goal is to buy everything in Dominica, including pepper and passion fruit.”
He says Bello is willing to negotiate a suitable price with farmers in that regard.
Despite the lack of raw material Fagan said the company is seeking to position itself as a major player, once again, in the United Kingdom (UK) market as well as new markets in other European and South American countries.
This is in an effort to rebuild the company’s markets which once saw demand of six containers monthly.
The company has agreed to provide one forty-foot container per month of products to the UK.