Dr. David Estwick, Minister of Agriculture. (FP)

Andrews in St. Joseph has been earmarked to be Barbados’ lone, multi-purpose sugar factory by 2014.

This was announced yesterday by Minister of Agriculture, Food, Fisheries and Water Resource Management, Dr. David Estwick, at the Sustainable Barbados Recycling Centre Inc. at Vaucluse, St. Thomas, as he took part in a half-day tour for World Food Day 2011.

"Andrews would allow us to introduce the modifications necessary. Those modifications would be to make Andrews a HACCP food grade factory. Secondarily, you would also have to introduce the technology in relation to the ethanol production …and to create electricity via a generator system," he explained.

Dr. Estwick said bearing in mind these changes, the factory still had to produce sugar and as such, the retrofitting would have to be carefully planned.

"We have to [carry out] the retrofitting during the off season and critically…, it means for the time, Portvale still has to take some of the load while we are retrofitting Andrews. So ultimately by 2014 we believe that we will be in a position to do this."

The Agriculture Minister added that the next step was to work out the financing model for the project, which he estimated would cost about BDS $200 million.

"I’m now discussing that with some international partners to see how best we can get this done. But I am confident that we can get it done by 2014," Dr. Estwick concluded.


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