Wednesday, April 24, 2024

Pride of place

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Samples of Bajan handicraft, food and other products drew locals and visitors to the Bay Street Esplanade yesterday.
Patrons took the opportunity to sample food, local wines and confectionery and view arts and craft being offered by small business people during the tenth Bajan Pride Exposition.
Chyi’anne’s Natural Blends sparked great interest, as the booth was one of the main stops for the scores of patrons at the exposition organized by the Ministry of Tourism.
Manager Juanne Odle said her oats, barley and linseed-based ice-creams and boosters were healthy options for children and adults. She offered soft ice-cream, smoothies and boosters which were all lactose-free and in a range of flavours including strawberry, mango, coconut and peanut.  
Odle explained that after she lost her job one year ago she took up the venture full time.
“I always liked cooking, so for me it came natural. So when I went through the Youth Entrepreneurship Scheme I had to come up with a viable business idea and decided to mix up something and I ended up with ice-cream and that is how it started,” she said.
Eloise Lee-Gold, managing director of Tzuriyah Bath and Body, praised the trade shows and exhibitions as excellent tools for helping small businesses.
She has a range of coconut oil-based natural skin care products. She explained that the products had been getting a good response from the public because of the scents and quality.  
Lee-Gold, who was trained in the United States and has been in the business for two years, said it had grown significantly within the past year.
Amander Williams-Clarke, of Williams Legacy, displayed products made of local woods. She added the shows had boosted the overseas and local markets and built awareness of the high-quality local work.
Williams-Clarke has designed a variety of jewellery boxes and craft items. She said that the masterpiece of her collection was a jewellery box shaped like the map of Barbados.
Kenrick Boucher, owner of Shalana’s Natural Wines, had on show some of his 25 flavours of natural alcoholic wines.
Boucher, who started his business nine years ago, said what started as an experiment had now grown into a flourishing business which he was constantly seeking to upgrade.
He explained that his business grew out of participation at expositions and fairs where he would test the products, get the comments of patrons and adjust the flavours to suit.
“It started as a trial-and-error process. I got some books and put some recipes together,” he added.
Marsha Armstrong, tourism development officer with the Ministry of Tourism, said the exposition was part of the Community Tourism Initiate to give exposure to arts and craft.
“We wanted to expose Barbadians who do not have the opportunity to do so out of a primary establishment. They don’t have their own physical business, so we give them an outlet to be exposed,” Armstrong said.
Twenty-five craftsmen and women, who produce jewellery, textiles, pottery, decorative items, aromatherapy products, natural wines and local delicacies, and entertainers took part in the expo.

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