The Board of Directors of the Grenada Co-operative Nutmeg Association (GCNA) and the Grenada Cocoa Association (GCA) held a joint meeting on 17 March 2020 to develop strategies for sustaining the business operations of both associations amidst the Covid-19 virus.
European buyers are already postponing shipment of both commodities. This is very crucial for the organisations since 2/3 of the associations’ cocoa and nutmegs are exported to European markets.
The meeting conducted a risk assessment for its business operations and collectively considered and adopted a series of strategic options for business continuity during this time. Maintaining the wellbeing of its over 5,000-member farmers plus employees, and continuing to purchase cocoa and nutmeg during this period were the driving priorities.
The key focus areas were:
- Protocols for members and employees – Provision of sanitising material and sensitisation of employees and farmers on recommended health and hygiene practices have commenced and supported with printed information at all operating locations has been implemented.
- Purchasing Commodities – The associations shall continue to purchase cocoa and nutmegs under specific protocols.
- Business Continuity – Meet and update government and bankers of the realities of the impact of the Covid-19 virus on the business and seek their support for sustaining the business in this period.
- Communication and Education – Provide farmers with information on best practices in handling their produce during this time and should buying days have to be scaled down. Update farmers with information impacting the business.
- Monitoring and Evaluation – Continuous monitoring of the situation in the markets and communication with all stakeholders plus revaluation of the strategic options.
Nutmeg and cocoa contribute significantly to livelihoods to smallholder farm families and their farmworkers and collectively amounts to over EC$20 million in foreign exchange into Grenada.
The Covid-19 has the potential to seriously disrupt the Cocoa and Nutmeg Associations in this country. The associations have been implementing measures to minimise the impact.
A joint communiqué was dispatched to the government highlighting the impact of Covid-19 virus on the business operations, the associations’ strategic options and request for government’s support during this period.
A press conference will follow shortly to inform the general membership on matters of this development and the strategic options that are before the associations.
Grenada Cooperative Nutmeg Association
Grenada Cocoa Association
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