Technical support, funding initiative launched for local agro-processors
Technical support, funding initiative launched for local agro-processors
Technical support, funding initiative launched for local agro-processors

LOCAL agro-processors, caterers and restaurateurs can now access needed technical support, funding and distribution channels, as “!nnovate Guyana,” a subsidiary of the Guyana Economic Development Trust, has launched its third edition of the Economic Development Accelerator (EDA) programme.

According to a press release from “!nnovate Guyana,” this year’s programme is offering a comprehensive solution for growing micro-businesses in food production and agro-processing.

The release stated that through funding from the US Agency for International Development (USAID), Eastern and Southern Caribbean Mission and the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) Lab, programme participants can access training, coaching, technical support and, importantly, zero- interest, non-collateralised, recoverable grants of US$5,000 designated for micro-businesses’ working capital needs.

“As a bonus, through partnerships with Guyana’s largest indigenous food retailer, Bounty Supermarkets, participating agro-processors’ products will now have extraordinary local exposure,” the release said.

Further, as it relates to distribution of local products, the EDA programme and Bounty Supermarkets will be launching the “Buy Local at Bounty” initiative, which will provide agro-processors who complete the EDA programme the opportunity for their products to be carried on the shelves of Bounty Supermarkets.

In essence, the participants will access all the building blocks necessary to enhance their products’ quality and presentation, enhance their business acumen, including marketing, financial and technological skills; receive access to low-cost capital, and be provided with avenues to distribute products locally and, eventually, internationally.

Regional Representative, USAID/Eastern and Southern Caribbean, Sara Walter, expressed her excitement for the programme, noting: “We at USAID are pleased to work with the Guyana Economic Development Trust / Economic Development Fund Inc. on this very important project. Food security is a high priority for us and we remain committed to investing in programmes which will address lasting food security, address rising inequality, and promote equitable economic growth and inclusive development.”

The EDA programme was launched in 2021, designed to support commercially viable, existing agro-processors by preparing them for the export market. Each year, the EDA identifies new ways to help participants scale. And each year, notable success stories emerge, some of which have been covered in Guyana’s local press.

Persons who are interested in being a part of the programme are encouraged to apply today to access these benefits at visit to apply. Applications close on May 31, 2023.

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