Quality Control and Food Safety of Caribbean Cocoa
Cocoa farmers island-wide were all present for a three day workshop on “Quality Control and Food Safety of Caribbean Cocoa,” which commenced on Tuesday August 7th.
This training was done to target producers of cocoa sticks, operators of cocoa drying facilities and stakeholders in the cocoa sector.
DEXIA’s Crop Development Officer Ms. Theodora Anthony-Williams says this workshop is part of the Centre for the Development of Enterprise (CDE) Project which is a three year European Union funded project, in partnership with DEXIA to re-stimulate interest in Dominica’s cocoa industry.
Ms. Anthony pointed out that this workshop also aims to strengthen the efforts in commercializing the cocoa sector of which food safety and standards.
Ms. Anthony says the participants are being very active during the workshop and are seeing the relevance of it.
Ms. Anthony says there is a lot of room in the cocoa industry so she is advising more persons to join in and take advantage of this opportunity.
The workshop facilitator Ms. Erna Abiola Amsterdam who is a Food Safety Expert of the Cocoa Research Unit of the University of the West Indies in Trinidad and Tobago mentioned that this workshop is vital for the cocoa industry, so that all involved will not have a problem when it comes to exporting their cocoa products, as they will be in compliance with the national standards of food safety.
The facilitator added that it is also important that good agricultural farm practices are adopted so the quality of cocoa produced will be of a very high standard.
The participants will be provided with a manual which contains guidelines they can follow to adopt the best practices.
One of the participants, Ms. Esther Gore who is from Marigot says she has been cultivating cocoa for number of years now so this workshop is very important to her.
Ms. Gore added that with more emphasis being placed on the cocoa industry she is of the belief that it can evolve into a grand market that they can benefit from.