$1.5m to boost coconut industry

It would take approximately $1.5 million to expand the coconut industry in Barbados and farmer Mahmood Patel is on a mission to see that within the next two years Barbados remains the leaders in the industry and set up an agri processing plant.

Patel, a coconut farmer, who is also the owner of Coco Hill Forest, told reporters he started the forest in 2013 to 2014, with the idea to look at the coconut industry as a subsector in the agricultural industry and one of the alternatives to the mono crop sugar cane.

He said they had planted about 500 trees over the last eight years, although they had intended to plant about 5 000 within that time frame.

However, he said the challenge remained the geography of the Scotland District, which required an intensive capital expenditure.

Patel said after eight years they had made all the necessary mistakes and had learned from them in order to scale up.  (RA)

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