DEXIA explores opportunities for trade with FWI mission trip

Products of participants in DEXIA’s trade mission to the FWI

A contingent of staff from the Dominica Export Import Agency (DEXIA) and local agro-processors will spend this week in the French West Indies (FWI) territories of Guadeloupe and Martinique as they seek to build relationships and explore markets for local products.

Head of the Agency’s Export Promotion and Development Department, Lloyd Pascal leads the delegation comprising Operations Manager of the DEXIA-managed Multi Purpose Pack Houses (MPPH) Bristol Lawrence, MPPH Marketing Officer Mitch Jno. Charles and producers Joey Peltier of Layou Park Nature Farms, Deryck St. Rose of  Roses Unlimited (pepper sauce manufacturers), Sherma Gregoire of Heaven Scent Soaps and Linvor Ambo of  Allorzee Business Ventures Inc. (Makers of Choco Dominique). There will also be a representative from the Waitukubuli Artist Association (WAA).

The delegation will meet with key stakeholders to discuss existing market conditions and opportunities for export of products and produce from Dominica to the FWI.

“This mission can assist our producers in identifying some key distributors, and so it’s an opportunity for them to meet with people on the ground and to understand for themselves, what the challenges are and what the competition is out there and how they need to step up in terms of building their businesses and building up their brand,” says Pascal.

He says in this Post-Maria landscape the availability of raw materials is a challenge but it is still important to have a presence in the market and build from there.  Mr. Pascal adds that this trip is also an opportunity to discuss issues concerning hucksters who transport fresh produce from Dominica and sell in FWI markets, including compliance with French regulations and the notable decrease in exports from Dominica.

“We want to see how we can have a better understanding of what the market involves- what is going on right now, what changes are taking place in the market and how we can step up, mitigate and change things in terms of our operations [there].”

The delegation will first stop in Guadeloupe, where from Monday 17th June; members will meet with the Guadeloupe Regional Council and Chamber of Commerce.  There will also be engagements with members of the Dominica Guadeloupe Association.  On Wednesday the 19th, they will travel to Martinique to meet with the Chamber of Commerce.

For his part, Mr. Lawrence is looking forward to “meeting with clients including hucksters and other clients that the Agency ships produce to. He says the MPPH staff will also be looking at their competitors and exploring some new opportunities that may exist such as meeting with a potential client interested in importing peppers and perhaps even pepper mash, both of which DEXIA can supply.”

Sherma Gregoire is the owner and founder of Heaven Scent Soaps and has been a client of DEXIA’s for the last three years. This is her first such visit to the FWI with DEXIA. She is looking forward to discussions with supermarkets and distributors for her products and says the opportunity will be a “big boost” for her business.

As a Trade Promotion Agency and Business Support Office, DEXIA has embarked on similar visits to markets including Antigua, The USVI and Barbados.

The delegation returns to Dominica on Friday 21st June 2019.

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7 Comments

  1. Teal
    June 19, 2019

    I refuse to buy the morenga products due to the outrageously excessive packaging.

  2. Food
    June 19, 2019

    Our products will look like low quality goods next to other products in the FWI with that kind of packaging.

  3. time has told
    June 18, 2019

    DEXIA needs to also explore the opportunity to improve manufacturing facilities and providing proper agro processing equipment to increase capacity.

  4. Roger Burnett
    June 18, 2019

    Exploration of trade for niche products is all well and good, but what is desperately needed is the development of processing ground and citrus crops so that they can be exported as a point-of-sale end product for the consumer.

    Ten years, by way of European Development Fund and DEXIA commissions, I made recommendations that, if implemented, could revolutionize the way we process and package our agricultural products, thus revitalizing what should be Dominica’s number one income earner.

    But alas, as with so many reports that call for innovation, they were not acted upon and to this day languish forgotten about in government filling cabinets.

  5. June 18, 2019

    Export this to the uk we are waiting.

  6. Shaka zulu
    June 17, 2019

    “He says in this Post-Maria landscape the availability of raw materials is a challenge but it is still important to have a presence in the market and build from there.” It is a step in right direction but can you guys quit using maria as a excuse for every darn thing. If post maria created a problem why were you guys not doing prior to maria when raw materials were in abundance? Why were the markets not already utilized right now you would be getting top price because comodity for the existing markets would be scarce increasing demand. Now we are coming as beggars so we probably going get lower prices even if raw material scarce. This is going lower long term value of our goods. I can say this, maria may have been a good thing for Dominica. It slap some of us to our senses and make us focus on what needs to be done. Nature is a check and control to our complacency.

    • time has told
      June 20, 2019

      Also what role has the Min. of Agriculture made to support agro processing? how many coconut trees planted to make coconut oil? how many pepper plants for pepper sauce? etc? Truth be told, processors import much of their raw materials that should be readily available.

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