THERE are many benefits which can be derived from the purchase of locally produced products. The Saint Lucia Hotel and Tourism Association (SLHTA) has been encouraging Saint Lucians to purchase and consume products which are grown and produced right here in Saint Lucia, through their Buy Local campaign. Saint Lucians are not only being urged to support local manufacturers simply for the sake of doing so, but because our manufacturers produce some of the finest goods in our region; goods of high quality which meet international standards.
The more we buy local the less dependant we become on imports. Too much dependence on imports forces the economy to become more and more reliant on other nations. A major consequence of this is that the political power of the dependant country begins to drop, which has other negative effects. The purchase of locally produced goods enables local producers to keep growing which creates more employment within the community. These local producers also buy raw material from other local businesses which also provide employment. Excessive imports means that most of the country’s money is being transferred to foreign based headquarters. As we buy local, more revenue is retained and recycled within our economy, which enriches the nation. Another benefit of buying local is that it encourages entrepreneurship which is a way of increasing the standard of living for many families.
Below are a number of quality goods made right here in Saint Lucia:
1) Frootsy Foods Ltd. is a manufacturing company located in the village of Praslin. It was established by Eldon Serieux in 1997. The company manufactures fruit jelly, fruit cheese, fruit jam, roasted nuts, natural honey, white vinegar, noodles, packaged chow mein, virgin coconut oil, dishwashing liquid, flavoured essence and household disinfectant.
2) Caribbean Perfumes manufactures a variety of ladies fragrances right here in Saint Lucia. The idea for Caribbean Perfumes was inhaled by its founder, Myra Killip, as she strolled through the gardens of the Diamond Estate on a late afternoon in 1976. Caribbean Perfumes now produces 30 ml eau de toilette ladies fragrances and 65ml eau de perfume natural sprays in attractive frosted bottles. Caribbean Perfumes are available in select hotel boutiques and stores around the island.
3) Caribbean Blue Naturals is manufactured by Natmed Ltd. It is a line of products which is produced with only the use of the best natural ingredients to bring you all natural insect repellents, soap, toothpastes, skincare, spa and herbal products which are all formulated to add value to your health. Caribbean Blue Naturals was founded in 1997 by Naturopathic Doctors. Caribbean Blue Naturals is located on the 1st floor of the JQ Mall in Rodney Bay.
4) Caribbean Awning Production Company Ltd. is a Saint Lucian based company which is the only company on island which manufactures awnings, interior window treatments and hurricane shutters. This company provides the right equipment anywhere that rain, sun or lack of security is a problem. They specialise in the manufacture of lateral arm awnings, awnings canopies, aluminium blinds, retractable shade awnings, bamboo wood woven shades, roman shades, rolling shutters, aluminium railings and so much more. Caribbean Awnings Production Company also installs and services all their products. Due to their high quality of products and high standard of service, Caribbean Awnings Production Company exports to all the OECS countries.
5) Meme Bete is a unique and high quality handbag brand which is produced right here in Saint Lucia. One of their specialties lies in creating handbags and purses which capture the “Soul of the Caribbean”. Bags are handcrafted from a range of materials that customers can choose from for their custom-made purses and handbags. Every Meme Bete handbag is unique in its own way to suit the customer. Meme Bete was founded in 2009 by Taribba Do Nascimento. It is located at #46 Micoud Street, Castries, upstairs Tropics Boutique.