The demand for Bajan breadfruits is rising, and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Export Barbados (BIDC), Mark Hill, wants Barbadians to take advantage of that export potential.
During the Estimates debate in the House of Assembly, Hill disclosed that even as the country exports thousands of kilograms of breadfruits weekly, the orders keep coming, earning foreign exchange for Barbados. In fact, he told Members of Parliament that Export Barbados (BIDC) received an order this week for 2000 lbs of breadfruits.
“So if there’s anybody in your constituency that has a breadfruit tree, you can please get them to contact us. The demand for breadfruit from Barbados, the Bajan breadfruit, is so big. Right now we’re doing around 10,000 kg [kilograms] a week in breadfruit and we cannot find enough breadfruit”.
The Export Barbados (BIDC) CEO said that anyone with a breadfruit tree who wants to cash in on this burgeoning sector should visit the website bajanbreadfruit.exportbarbados.org to register their breadfruit tree.
“Once we see it registered there, somebody comes out, analyses how much fruit you have forecast to come into the pipeline. Then there are exporters and also offtakers in Canada, America and England that are ready to buy that breadfruit that is growing on your tree. So you don’t even have to sell the breadfruit,” the CEO stated, explaining that it is sold even before it is finished growing.
CEO Hill reiterated the significant export potential that exists, while noting that the produce from the high-yielding food plant fetches a premium price internationally. He indicated that the same breadfruit sold in Barbadian supermarkets for as little as $3.50, would sell in Canada for CAN$20 or in the United Kingdom for £15.
“The reality is there is more opportunity in that export space and we therefore want to cultivate a culture of export [and] foster a mindset of export among our entrepreneurs and our enterprises”.
Hill insisted that every business can be an exporter, no matter the size, adding that Export Barbados (BIDC) is committed to getting local businesses “export ready”.