by Linda Straker
- 16,000 pounds of assorted poultry products from Belize imported late December 2020
- 2 processing facilities in Belize cleared by CAHFSA as ready-for-export within CSME
- No poultry facilities in Grenada have clearance from CAHFSA
The Caricom nation of Belize became Grenada’s latest source market for the importation of poultry products, when a distributor imported 16,000 pounds of assorted poultry products in late December 2020.
Western Dairies Belize, under the Right of Establishment of the Caricom Single Market and Economy (CSME), incorporated Western Dairies Grenada Ltd in 2018 to serve as a hub for exports into the Caricom market. This newly formed operation which was registered at the Corporate Affairs and Intellectual Property Office (CAIPO) in 2017 has been the conduit for several shipments of Western Dairies ice cream into the Grenada market. It has now diversified with the export of chicken cuts. This was the first-ever shipment of poultry products to the Caricom region.
Belize’s poultry industry has been preparing for export opportunities since the Caribbean Animal Health and Food Safety Agency (CAHFSA) 2017 risk assessment cleared Belize’s 2 processing facilities as ready-for-export within the CSME.
Speaking about the quality of the products, Rachel Humphrey who currently serves as the company manager in Grenada said that the products are not treated with chemicals for export. “The poultry is not treated with any chemicals whatsoever. No colourants, no preservatives, no injections with brine or water, no steroids and no hormones. It is antibiotic-free. There is no special chemical treatment for the chicken for export versus the chicken sold locally in Belize. It is all the same standard,” she said.
Agriculture Minister Peter David said that the importer encountered some minor challenges due to a delay in the shipment, but the relevant ministries came together to ensure that the Belizean poultry crossed the hurdles at the port of entry. “But what is important is that as a member of Caricom, we in Grenada are supportive to a regional product which has met the required standard for entry into our market.”
Agriculture and Fisheries Senator Roderick St Clair would like to see Grenada’s poultry industry reach the point of exporting to another regional Caricom member state. He said that as it stands now, none of the poultry facilities in Grenada has clearance from the CAHFSA. “And it’s that type of clearance our facilities here will need for the poultry industry to experience some serious growth and development.”