Barbadians seeking to purchase fresh produce and meats from farmers will have to adapt to a new system, in light of the impact of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) on the island.
In keeping with the advice of health authorities to practise social distancing, persons will now be required to order the commodities of their choice and opt to either collect or have the packaged items delivered.
The decision was taken following consultation with industry stakeholders, the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security and other relevant authorities.
Addressing the nation via broadcast media from Ilaro Court on Tuesday, Acting Prime Minister Santia Bradshaw announced that the Barbados Agricultural Development and Marketing Corporation (BADMC), the Barbados Egg and Poultry Association (BEPA) and the Barbados Pig Farmers Association would be facilitating the sale of produce on behalf of farmers.
According to her, the BADMC would be the hub for fresh fruit and vegetables, while poultry and pork products would be handled by the BEPA and the Pig Farmers Association, respectively.
She stated: “There will be a process of ordering though dedicated landlines, mobile phones, email and WhatsApp messaging. Curbside pickups will be in place at the BAS [Barbados Agricultural Society], the Grotto; BADMC, Fairy Valley and Spring Hall, Chickmont, Star Chick and Amir’s Chicken car parks.”
“Deliveries will be done for village shops, minimarts, supermarkets and for individuals for orders $30 and up,” the Acting Prime Minister added.
The sale of produce will take place between 9:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. and measures have been put in to facilitate non-cash payments.