Category Archives: Agriculture

Shocker: Frozen Taiwan Mahi-Mahi sold as fresh Barbados dolphin!

UPDATED: Importer to Barbados is… (drum roll please)…

Yinnex Co.
Taiwan 3 shipments total Has verified third-party data
2 shipments match west indies
…Stowed In A Refrigerated Set At The Of 25 Also Morgans Fish House Inc. 7 Gibbons Industrial Park, Barbados West Indies

Attn: Mr. Jonathan Morgan (link here)

Barbados Fish Market Mahi Mahi

We used to have to explain Bajan Dolphin to visitors. “It isn’t flipper but a fish known elsewhere as mahi mahi”.

Now even Bajans may need some explanations. As this recent photo taken at the Bridgetown Fishing Complex shows, your “fresh Bajan Dolphin” may well be defrosted Taiwanese Mahi Mahi!

How can this be? The answer is that it is easier and cheaper to import fish from the other side of the world, rather than to pay local fisher folk fair value.

Wary Bajan Fish Eater

Barbados Taiwan Dolphin (click photo for large)

Thanks to an old friend!

And from another old friend, we received this:

Yinnex Co. 17TH FL, 129 FU HSING SOUTH ROAD, SECTION 1 TAIPEI,TAIWAN S/O:1111

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Filed under Agriculture, Barbados, Consumer Issues

Could Barbados diversify its agricultural industry with marijuana-fed pork?

Pot-fed pork selling for US$20 a pound…

Well, it’s not like we’re making any money from sugar cane anymore!

Thanks to an old friend for suggesting this video

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Confusion and intrigue as press release battle errupts over the “Sea Island Cotton” brand names.

barbados-cotton

A press release battle over which companies have the right to purchase and sell grown in Barbados cotton has journalists, news media and blogs so confused that nobody seems to know the truth about anything when it comes to “Sea Island Cotton”.

This confusion is deadly to the value of our cotton on the world market because the added value in cotton grown in Barbados comes from the brand not from the cotton itself. Our cotton is expensive to produce due to the lack of economy of scale, the higher labour costs to grow and harvest and higher processing and transportation costs to get it to market. IF our cotton is “better” than cotton grown in other places it is probably only incrementally better, and not superior enough to justify the price differential from cotton grown by China, India and other mass-scale producers.*

So what we really have is the brand, the name… and now there is confusion.

Just read the below press releases from Adlai Stevenson, the CEO of “ECCI” and rival Kyto BioPharma Inc. and you’ll see these brands or names mentioned…

Exclusive Cottons of the Caribbean Inc. “ECCI”

West Indian Sea Island Cotton

Barbados Sea Island Cotton Inc.

Genuine Certified West Indian Sea Island Cotton

Another company used to market our crop as “Caribbean Sea Island Cotton

You’ll also see that while Mr. Stevenson’s press release says “We buy all West Indian Sea Island Cotton grown commercially in Barbados and process that cotton…”, that statement falls short of saying that ECCI buys all cotton produced in Barbados. ECCI says it buys all the “West Indian Sea Island Cotton”: whatever that means. The headline on the release doesn’t say “still retains all rights to ALL Barbados-grown cotton”… it says “still retains all rights to Barbados-grown cotton”

That missing word could be a big deal.

The cotton industry in Barbados has had rough times in the last fifteen years, including troubles surrounding the ownership of the brand and processing companies, with the Barbados Defense Force once sent to seize everything at gunpoint and against a judge’s order, and some of the involved foreign investors threatened and arsoned! In June of 2013 we also told readers about an  overly-slick stock scheme involving Barbados cotton.

So good luck to the poor folks who rely upon cotton to make their living in Barbados. The big money boys are fighting again.

Here is Adlai Stevenson’s Press Release, and then we’ll have the press release from Kyto BioPharma Inc….

* According to the National Cotton Council of America, the top ten cotton producing countries are (in order) People’s Republic of China, India, United States, Pakistan, Brazil, Uzbekistan, Australia, Turkey, Turkmenistan and Greece.

Exclusive Cottons of the Caribbean Inc. still retains all rights to Barbados-grown cotton

Exclusive Cottons of the Caribbean Inc. (ECCI), the company responsible for transforming West Indian Sea Island Cotton (WISIC) into a viable industry, has taken issue with inaccurate statements about Barbados’ cotton industry being made in a press release being circulated on Internet news websites and blogs in the United States (US) and Barbados.

ECCI says that the release and iterations of it which appeared in the US before being picked up by local media and blogs state that a Canadian bio-pharmaceutical company called Kyto BioPharma Inc., had recently announced that it was acquiring the outstanding common shares in a company called Barbados Sea Island Cotton Inc. (BSC). The release also stated that a Jonathan Bryant will be named President and Chief Operating Officer and Director of BSC after the share exchange has been completed. Continue reading

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Company says “political relationships” enabled purchase of Barbados Sea Island Cotton

Does Barbados really have a cotton industry?

Does Barbados really have a cotton industry?

Hey… I’m just sayin’ what they are sayin’ !!!

Kyto BioPharma Inc. Announces Letter of Intent to Acquire Barbados Sea Island Cotton Inc.

PALM BEACH GARDENS, FL–(Marketwired – Jul 22, 2013) – Kyto BioPharma Inc. (“Kyto”) (OTCQB: KBPH) is pleased to announce that it has entered into a Letter of Intent to acquire all of the outstanding common shares of Barbados Sea Island Cotton Inc. (“BSC”) through the issuance of 10 million common shares of Kyto to the shareholders of BSC and BSC satisfying Kyto’s outstanding debt on closing. BSC, through political relationships, industry experience and proprietary investments in the Island of Barbados, has secured the rights to manage …

Wall Street Journal here

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Barbados Sea Island Cotton – Barbados Government backing ‘double your money’ slick stock scheme!

Now this is interesting. The Caribbean Sea Island Cotton brand has become Barbados Sea Island Cotton and to get the whole thing rolling again the Bajan Government is apparently backing a ‘double your money way too fast’ scheme.

More questions than answers in the video, but it does remind me about a BFP article published back in September of 2009. Here’s an excerpt…

Our bull manure warning meter spiked though when we read another one of those “Things gonna be just fine!” articles at the CBC – this one about Barbados cotton. Yup, right on schedule every year or so for the past ten years the government of the day announces that our cotton industry is going to be “revitalised” through better marketing. Nevermind that we haven’t the economies of scale to be competitive on the world market. Nevermind that we can’t even find sufficient labour to harvest the sugar crop in a timely manner.

Nevermind the naysayers, says the government to CBC, Barbados will “revitalise” the cotton industry. (Hmmm…. I think I smell a World Bank development grant out there somewhere.)

And how are we going to make Barbados cotton economically viable? How are we going to compete against China and India, the first and second largest cotton producers in the world? How are we going to profit in the middle of a recession where the commodity news services are reporting Recession hits cotton consumption, down 12% ?

How is Barbados cotton going to be profitable when India is using her booming economy to subsidize her cotton farmers so much that world cotton prices are forecast to fall by 6% in the next year?

How are we going to make Barbados cotton viable?

We’re going to make a “new brand”, that’s how! We’re going to sell to “upscale” markets. Yup, that’s what Agriculture Minister Senator Benn told the CBC.

Read the full article at BFP: Caribbean Sea Island Cotton brand to be killed by Barbados… as if a name change will solve anything

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Should Barbados allow the Monsanto seed monopoly? Can we stop it even if we want to?

Monsanto Seeds

“Patents on seed are illegitimate because putting a toxic gene into a plant cell is not “creating” or “inventing” a plant. These are seeds of deception — the deception that Monsanto is the creator of seeds and life; the deception that while Monsanto sues farmers and traps them in debt, it pretends to be working for farmers’ welfare, and the deception that GMOs feed the world. GMOs are failing to control pests and weeds, and have instead led to the emergence of superpests and superweeds.”

… from the Global Research article The Seeds Of Suicide: How Monsanto Destroys Farming

“Monsanto works with farmers from around the world to make agriculture more productive and sustainable. Our technologies enable farmers to get more from every acre of farmland.

Specifically, we are working to double yields in our core crops by 2030. These yield gains will come from a combination of advanced plant breeding, biotechnology, and improved farm-management practices.”

… from the Monsanto website Our Commitment to Sustainable Agriculture

“In the nearly 20 years of applied use of G.E. in agriculture there have been two notable ‘successes,’ along with a few less notable ones. These are crops resistant to Monsanto’s Roundup herbicide (Monsanto develops both the seeds and the herbicide to which they’re resistant) and crops that contain their own insecticide. The first have already failed, as so-called superweeds have developed resistance to Roundup, and the second are showing signs of failing, as insects are able to develop resistance to the inserted Bt toxin — originally a bacterial toxin — faster than new crop variations can be generated.”

… from the NYT as quoted in Prison Planet’s Even the NY Times is now rejecting Monsanto GMO science

BFP thanks Green Monkey for suggesting this article

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Dr. Robert Lucas: Taking issue with the scientific illiterates

Barbados Sugar Cane.jpg

Tropical soils, Temperate soils: What’s the difference and does it matter?

In the Advocate newspaper of 8th April 2013, there was an article captioned “Organic agriculture can boost restaurant sub-sector.” Immediately below the caption in bold font was the following statement: “In temperate countries like the UK, the organic matter content stood at 5%. In Barbados on the other hand….the organic matter content in most soils was less than one percent.” The statement also appeared in paragraph five of the article. In paragraph eight of the same article, the following appeared: “Conventional methods contribute to green house gas emissions and can cause inefficiencies in energy use..” The two statements were attributed to the National Co-ordinator of the United Nations Development Facility Small Grants Program (GEF SGP).

In biology there is a concept called the temperature quotient. The temperature quotient is a ratio of the velocity of a process at a given temperature to that at a temperature 10 °C lower. In biological systems the temperature quotient is about 2-3. This means that there is (using the lower figure) a doubling of the rate of a biological reaction for every ten degrees increase in temperature. This doubling effect occurs up to certain temperature beyond which, there is an adverse reaction due to effect of heat. Since tropical countries are hotter than temperate ones, one would expect tropical soils to have little or no soil organic matter. Obviously, if fresh vegetation or pen manure is added to tropical soils, initially, soil organic matter will be high. This, however, is only so for a short time. The duration of organic matter is further reduced in the presence of air and water. Another fact to be considered is the carbon /nitrogen ration of the added vegetation or manure. If the nitrogen content is too low, the rate of decomposition is retarded: the converse occurs if there is adequate nitrogen available. Pen manure or vegetation added to the soil is broken down by soil micro-organisms. Students of biology would have encountered in their studies the carbon and nitrogen cycles. Carbon dioxide and nitrogen are the ultimate products of the decomposition of manure and vegetation when added to soils as is the case when fertilizers are used.

I have stated in the past that, the majority of Barbadians are scientific illiterate and the article referred to, supports what I have been saying for years.

Sincerely

Robert D.Lucas, Ph.D.

Food biotechnologist.

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Free market and science drive Apes Hill Club’s choice of grass

apeshill_Barbados

Barbados Free Press has been kicking ’bout hey for over seven years and that is a long time in the blog world to post every day and build credibility with the search engines like Google and Yahoo!. Readership goes up and down with the news stories and when a big event happens we receive tens of thousands of visitors a day. Our best day ever was 44,087 visitors and just last week we did alright when some discussion about Harlequin was flying and 33,669 visitors stopped by.

Those numbers aren’t much compared with the big blogs that drive that kind of traffic and better every day, but we still do 3 million visitors a year at BFP and that’s not bad for a little nothing blog run by a bunch of drunks and the occasional unemployed aircraft riveter. (Anybody want to buy the world’s best set of bucking bars and dimplers – give me a shout! And when I say “the world’s best set” I mean it. It includes some wildly customized bucking bars and cutters that you didn’t even know you needed until you use them. I shoulda patented them a long time ago but it’s too late now.)

Some press release agents think Barbados Free Press is a real newspaper. Huh?

Some people mistake us for a real newspaper (or maybe they don’t) and we receive a couple of dozen press releases a week about anything and everything. Most are boring product announcements but today we see one about a type of grass that does exceptionally well in the Barbados and similar climes. I never considered it before but the press release has me thinking about how a good drought-resistant grass could save big money for a golf course over a few years. Water is scarce and expensive in Bim, so the choice of grass for any type of space should be a carefully considered decision.

Apes Hill Club Nursery is the licensed producer of this Zoysia sod in Barbados. That probably means it’s expensive… but how much water will you save over the years by using this type?

Robert

BARBADOS — Bladerunner Farms, the world’s largest privately owned zoysiagrass research and development facility, is proud to announce that Apes Hill Club Nursery, a licensed producer of JaMur Zoysia on the Caribbean Island of Barbados, now has this environmentally friendly turfgrass available for harvest.

The wholesale Apes Hill Club Nursery grows 15-acres of JaMur Zoysia for harvest as sod, along with some 50,000 plants, that are sold to commercial landscapers, land developers and homeowners on the island of Barbados. Ed Paskins, CGCS, is the golf course superintendent at the neighboring Apes Hill Club golf club and was instrumental in developing the Apes Hill Club Nursery.

Before planting the sod farm at Apes Hill Club Nursery, Paskins visited the Poteet, Texas, research facility of Bladerunner Farms to see JaMur Zoysiagrass in a real-world situation. That visit helped him decide to license JaMur Zoysia for use in Barbados.

“You need to know that you’re getting quality and that the person is going to stand beside it. I think that because Bladerunner Farms is a family business and the owner, David Doguet, was willing to put his reputation on the line for the grass was extremely important,” Paskins said.

…continue reading this article at WorldGolf

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Food-fraud a multi-billion dollar business. Horsemeat scandal continues.

 horse-meat food fraud

Veterinarians should refrain from meddling in food processing operations.

For Barbados Free Press by Robert D. Lucas, PH.D

Food traceability has been topical in the print-media recently in connection with the adulteration (food fraud) and mis-labeling of beef and other processed food products with horse meat in countries of the European Union( EU).

According to Barbados Senior Veterinary officer, Dr. Mark Trotman, (as reported in the Barbados Advocate of the 21 and 28 of  February 2013) ‘his department has carried out “extensive-traced back investigations” and to date none of the identified products had been imported into Barbados.’ Products adulterated with horsemeat in  the European Union were listed in both articles. Presumably, Trotman was referring to these products.

I will now explain for the benefit of Trotman some facets of food safety, traceability and meat speciation analysis.

“No amount of tracking without use of analytical techniques of meat speciation would have prevented the fraud…”

“I have always stated that unless veterinarians are trained in public health, they should refrain from meddling in food processing operations.”

In the past (letters to the Advocate: Food fraud a Global Occurrence, November 18, 2000) I outlined the wide-spread nature of food fraud and stated that it was a multi-billion-dollar business. The adulteration of processed foods with horsemeat falls under the heading of food fraud. No amount of tracking without use of analytical techniques of meat speciation would have prevented the fraud as I will now explain. Continue reading

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Bajan Canadian Farm Worker – participants raped by the Barbados government

 barbados canada farm workers

High time now that our voices be heard!!!!

by Lance – Canadian Farm Worker

The Barbadian Canadian farm workers need someone to champion their cause because in my opinion we’re currently being ripped off by the Barbados government. The 28% deduction that our home-savings has to suffer at the conversion point first – before we’re ever paid a penny of it at the end of the season – is a brutal and bloodsucking act of government.

I’m also of the opinion that the 25% which is deducted from our gross earnings in Canada for home-saving is way too much! And then to be subjected to a further 28% deduction after it’s converted to the Barbados currency is just wrong man! This is corruption of the highest fashion. It means that our spending power is limited in Canada due to the 25% that’s deducted from our earnings, and then further handicapped after we return home by the additional 28% deduction that the 25% deduction for home-savings has to endure at the conversion point. How can we ever achieve a relatively decent living?

Our home-savings is all we have to sustain us for the 4 months we’re at home without employment. We can’t file for unemployment benefits or the reverse tax credit because they say we’re self-employed! A convenient technicality of government merely to leave us on our own hanging dry without any recourse, while they suck the last penny from us! Continue reading

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Barbados yogurt production ends – exposing more hollow government rhetoric

“Whenever practical, buy local.”

by Adrian Loveridge, small hotel owner

by Adrian Loveridge, small hotel owner

When we moved to Barbados almost 25 years ago and  purchased what was a semi-derelict Arawak Inn and beginning our journey in hotel operation, as non-nationals, not surprisingly, only a handful of suppliers would extend us credit. We have remained fiercely loyal and faithful to that small group.

So when PineHill made its entirely unilateral decision to stop producing yogurts it went entirely in the face of a policy we implemented when Peach and Quiet opened: “Whenever practical, buy local.”

“It is almost incomprehensible that this decision by PineHill was made at a time when our struggling dairy industry is trying to survive in the wake of a massive unsold milk glut.”

One or two people have indicated that PineHill did in fact issue a public notice in the media to the effect that they would no longer be manufacturing yogurts. But wouldn’t you, as a matter of course, write to customers that have traded with you for two decades?

After all, we have never been to busy to write and sign, literally hundreds of cheques to them over that period. It almost reeks of arrogance and indifference on their part.

So what do the 160 or so registered hotels, hundreds of villas, apartments and condominiums do now?

In our own case we have been forced to purchase imported yogurts from a distributor, who bring in the French brand, Yoplait. While the individual containers do not show a country of origin, the packaging does and indicates that they are made at their US subsidiary in Minneapolis. So at a critical time, when we are trying to retain every cent of foreign earnings, here we are importing an item that has a long history of local production, that is being trucked and shipped by refrigerated transport over a distance of at least 6,000 miles.

Just think about the carbon footprint for a minute.

Surely the company has to publicly explain why they have chosen this time to cease production and why it is no longer viable? With over 500,000 long stay visitors annually plus sales to locals, cruise ship companies and inflight caterers, what is the problem?

Another point that should be raised, are the recognised health benefits associated with yogurts and would it not be in the national interest to encourage more consumption. Foreign alternatives almost certainly will be more expensive and in these challenging times that alone will stifle demand.

I was also surprised that yogurt attracted 17.5 per cent VAT, as it surely could not be considered a luxury food item, but more a weapon against obesity and digestive disorders. Back on 13th January 2011 under a large attention grabbing Nation News banner headline ‘Bigger Basket’, the then Minister of Trade stated that more VAT exempt items would be added to the ‘basket’. Once again, this appears to be only just more rhetoric.

I really hope that PineHill will re-consider their decision or alternatively take steps to relinquish their near monopoly of milk processing, by giving another manufacturer a chance in Barbados.

The Line in the Sand…

With rights there are responsibilities and while yogurt may seem to some as an insignificant part of the bigger picture, but to me, it’s the line in the sand.

After yogurt, what comes next?

Will PineHill then transfer milk production to Trinidad, because due to energy costs, its cheaper to boil the liquid there?

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Rats, Round-up herbicide and Genetically Modified Corn

What is happening to our bodies?

Everybody has an agenda, but the wonderful thing about the internet is that information is no longer restricted and controlled by ‘official’ gate-keepers. As a sovereign human being I am able to examine all the information and then make up my own mind.

What do I think about genetically modified organisms? I’m not sure yet… but I’m getting nervous with the more information I receive from all sides and from the observations I make myself.

Not that it’s related to GMO corn or Round-up, I am curious about the apparent drastic reduction in the age at which females usually experience their first menses. One of the girls in our extended family is just entering puberty. She’s eight years old, just turned.

Tell me if I’m wrong folks, but I don’t think that happened twenty or thirty years ago, at least not with the frequency we hear about now.

What is happening to our bodies… and why?

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Hydroponic agriculture – one solution to food self-sufficiency for Barbados

“Cucumbers hanging down grow six inches a day.”

Our thanks to an old friend for forwarding some websites about the CuisinArt Golf Resort & Spa in Anguilla. The resort features a hydroponic farm and organic gardens that supply vegetables and herbs to the hotel.

The hydroponic operation is run by Dr. Howard Resh, a Canadian who became involved with hydroponics in the early 1970’s while a graduate student at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, B.C., Canada. Upon graduation in 1975, Dr. Resh taught at the University of British Columbia for three years, but his interest was always in the commercial application of hydroponics. As a result, he became involved in hydroponic projects throughout the World including countries as Canada, United States, Saudi Arabia, Taiwan, Venezuela, Tortola and Anguilla.

Can hydroponics survive ‘island time’ culture?

Have a look at the video of the CuisinArt Resort project, then read some of what Dr. Resh has to say at his website. (www.howardresh.com) This method of agriculture seems to be working well in Anguilla. Could hydroponic agriculture assist in making Barbados self-sufficient in food production… or would the hydroponic facilities just end up a victim of the ‘island time’ malaise that prevents preventative maintenance on the island and sometimes kills initiatives that work well in other locales?

That’s an interesting societal question.

Dr. Resh believes that Caribbean islands can be commercially successful with hydroponics and eventually supply sufficient fresh produce for the cruise ship industry. Here’s some of what he says on his website:

“Dr. Resh is presently working with Cuisinart Resort & Spa in Anguilla, British West Indies in the Caribbean growing lettuce, herbs, bok choy, tomatoes, peppers and cucumbers with various hydroponic cultures including raft culture, NFT, perlite bato buckets, and plant towers using perlite. This hydroponic farm is part of the hotel-resort complex that provides fresh salad crops to the hotel restaurants.

It is Dr. Resh’s belief that hydroponics will be used more in areas of the Caribbean having large tourist industries. Water is scarce on many of the islands having more favorable climatic conditions, so with the generation of fresh water from the sea water through a reverse osmosis process the water must be conserved in the growing of plants using hydroponic techniques. Islands having drier climates with the generation of fresh water provide opportunities for hydroponic production that may be exported to neighboring islands and cruise ships.”

Further Reading

Anguilla: a hydroponic paradise

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France considers emergency ban on Monsanto’s genetically modified corn after study links cancer

Eating GMO foods dangerous?

by Green Monkey

In light of the recent news from France that Monsanto’s Roundup Ready variety of corn has been linked to significant increases in cancer in long term animal feeding trials (which Monsanto itself refused to perform).  I think it is important for Barbados Free Press readers to be fully aware of the risks they are potentially running by eating corn or processed foods from North American food manufacturers who now use large quantities of genetically modified crops from Monsanto and other GMO suppliers in their products.

Green Monkey

France to prove study linking GM corn to cancer

France has asked its national health body to verify a study released this week linking Monsanto’s NK603 genetically modified corn to cancer in rats, saying the results of the probe could lead to an “emergency suspension” of NK603 imports. Continue reading

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Bajans pick cotton, cut sugar cane twenty years from now? Let’s get real!

Does Barbados really have a cotton industry?

Cotton industry ‘revamp’ same talk we’ve heard for 40 years

submitted by Bleeding Hands

Barbados takes pride in our educated population and in our status as an ‘almost’ developed nation. The recent economic setbacks might have pushed us back a step or two, but this is a worldwide phenomena not exclusive to our country. Bajans should be proud of what we have achieved together in the last four decades.

One of the social changes brought about by our development and increased education, however, is that few if any of our young people aspire to jobs or business ownership in agriculture and especially not in agricultural sectors reminiscent of the plantation era of our history. If one could grow tomatoes or other food crops and make a decent living that is one thing: sugar and cotton are another world entirely in the minds of bajans and for good reason. Aside from the unprofitable nature of the those two crops, sugar and cotton have historical baggage that young bajans want nothing to do with and I cannot blame them.

Despite the unemployment on this island, Barbados has to import labour from other countires to work our sugar and cotton industries. That is because our population rejects the work, and they reject it because they have been conditioned to reject it – and also it pays nothing or next to nothing. Continue reading

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DLP – BLP legacy? “Twenty years ago we had everything going for us and we blew it.”

Graeme Hall Watershed: DLP government voted to develop the last green space between airport and the city

After we’ve sold all the land, what’s left?

by Peltdownman

Look, it’s like this. Over the past 15 years, Barbados’ so-called prosperity has been based solely on our selling of land to foreigners, and looking after other people’s money.

Barbados is a “do-nothing” country. The level of inertia in both government and the public service is staggering. The country is dominated by party politics, which itself has nothing to do with the betterment of ordinary citizens, but is based on who can pocket the most out of what is available. The list of matters on which no action has been taken by either party when in government is endless, and it cannot only be put down to indolence. It has to be because vested interests are at stake. I would be happy for someone to give me another explanation.

“PRIME MINISTER OWEN ARTHUR last night defended the sale of Barbadian land to foreign investors, saying the country had to be able to pay its bills.”

… from the September 28, 2006 Nation News article Paying by Land

Twenty years ago we had everything going for us and we blew it. Of course more emphasis on manufacturing and agriculture would have helped stave off some of the problems that we have now. But it was too easy to sell land, especially on the beach, and comments from visitors who claim that they will not come back often refer to the lack of sea views. Hindsight can be 20/20, but with so little agricultural land left (check the Google Earth picture of Barbados), the way forward will be very difficult. Hi-tech manufacturing is a great idea, but our educational system is not geared to man it, and we need venture capitalists and a legal system than can accommodate these industries quickly. It will never happen.

It’s over for the way of life that we have become accustomed to. Live with it. Continue reading

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Sound the Alarms: A call for Bajans to reclaim our nation & our industry

Where has Bim’s “Pride and Industry” run off to?

by Brudah-Bim

There was a post at BFP written by the good sir Mr. Caleale Goodridge, and he made a good attempt at mapping out how Barbados can structurally overhaul its economy through productive industries such as manufacturing agriculture, and by owning domestic corporations. To be honest, Bim’s economy as well as her bureaucratic and political systems should have been restructured a long time ago. With all the “education” and “leadership in competence” we boast of here in Bim, the nation would have already been well on its way to achieving a standard of living reminiscent to that of Luxembourg, New Zealand, and Iceland combined!

“What doesn’t help our situation either is that there is an over-saturation of other economies within the Caribbean market that are avidly competing with Barbados in two of her major economic platforms; tourism and offshore banking.”

If we had truly competent leaders, the nation would have no external debt and we would have quite the substantial Budget surplus by now. Had we politicians that scrutinized and closely oversaw the sectors that are essential to our nation’s economy through preemptive and strategic means that could have enabled mutual flexibility on part of domestic and foreign markets is a plan long overdue to the people of Bim. Continue reading

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Growing Our Own Produce. For God’s Sake!

‘Precious Millions are spent on daily dalliances that have nothing to do with critical issues.’

by Colin Leslie Beadon

Plant your Barbados Victory Garden!

India has recently experienced a huge power supply failure where millions of people were affected in so many ways without electricity. Without electricity, just about everything of commercial business these days comes to a stop, besides most homes, schools, hospitals, gas stations, airports, et al. But such a power outage does not necessarily kill anybody.

However there are one or two other such product failures that can do very dramatic damage to human endeavour, but few of us in Barbados seem aware of these things. They are: Food and water.

The lack of these two items is much more extreme in the results they cause, but nobody who has not been through such a dilemma as extreme thirst or extreme hunger or both; or seen a society suffer from such depredation, would fully appreciate where it leads.

So let us spell it out: Such depredation leads to the complete breakdown of most societies (Read ‘Collapse’ by Jared Diamond). The scene becomes horrific beyond most imaginations. Only the very strong survive it, and for a time. The old and the very young are lucky for they are the first to die.

“Britain, during the war, started producing 91% of its own food in small allotments farmed by villagers and town’s people.”

Victory Gardens

When England was deep in World War 2 and the shipping lines had been drastically cut and the winters were long and miserable, the British started intensive agricultural development. Everybody got down to growing vegetables on every available square of soil they could find; parks, empty housing lots, swimming pools and playing fields became Victory Gardens. This is what saved the UK when it came to food. Britain, during the war, started producing 91% of its own food in small allotments farmed by villagers and town’s people. Remember they had winters to contend with also. We don’t have winters in Barbados, and so apart from dry spells, there is little to stop us producing our own food All -Year -Through.

The British discovered that small lots ( 14 yards by 4 or 6 yards wide), looked after by concerned people, produced much higher quality and yields of produce than did huge commercial farms on a square acre average. Even the Russians have started to discover this as have the Chinese. Farms run by governments anywhere in the world are enormously unproductive and wasteful. That goes for a lot of other things governments decide to run on their own, like airlines, oil fields, and hotels. Continue reading

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