We grow lots of stuff in the Caribbean; from papayas and bananas, soursoup and peppers, to ginger and turmeric. Almost every conceivable tropical fruit and vegetable can be found in places like Jamaica, the Dominican Republic, Dominica and Guyana and on a smaller scale in most of the other islands.
Most of us focus on selling the raw fruits and vegetables. There is just too much work involved in transforming bananas into chutney and guavas into jam. It takes a whole year to realise a great liqueur from a fall crop of guavaberries and the financial situation of now, just requires that you sell those just harvested soursops today. Developing value added products takes time and money, experimentation and imagination. And, in this fast paced world of the internet, who really has time for that anyway? And once the product is made, you have to find the right jar and the right label. You then have to determine how to get the items to market, determine who you are selling to and how to price all of that labour. It is no easy undertaking. Then there is competition with all of those imported products. It just doesn’t seem worth it.
At Lady Sarah’s Farms, we get joy out of experimenting with food. We love working with fresh ginger from Dominica and hibiscus blossoms from the BVI. We love combining them with cinnamon and raw cane sugar from Jamaica. Our ginger spice syrup contains arbol chile peppers from our own little farm. We are currently experimenting with carambola, also from our little farm and we hope to have products featuring our fresh mint and turmeric real soon. We believe there is tremendous value in products made right here in the Caribbean, from products grown organically in our rich earth and gorgeous sunshine.
They are simply so much more delicious!