This Article was taken from Kaieteur News: https://www.kaieteurnewsonline.com/2020/12/21/mocha-arcadia-hosts-successful-market-day-event/
Farming has long been a common feature in Mocha/Aracadia, a predominately Afro-Guyanese community located on the East Bank of Demerara, seven miles from Georgetown.
In recent years, the community has seen a notable increase in farming activities, so much that the Mocha/Arcadia Multipurpose Association Coop and the Neighbourhood Democratic Council (NDC) saw it best to organize a Mocha Producers Market Day initiative to give farmers of the village a place to showcase and sell their products.
The market day activity which started at 6:00 am yesterday featured a wide showcase of agricultural, horticultural, animal and craft products made by the villagers.
Organizer of the event and Mocha/Aracadia NDC Councillor, Raeburn Jones explained, the activity was spawn from a need to assist farmers/producers, establish a place where they can market their products.
Jones said that “over the last three years, the community has seen significant increase in farming activities such as poultry, sheep, goat and swine production, plant nurseries, and some processing of agricultural commodities.”
He said that as a result, there was a great concern over the marketing of the commodities and having continuous sale linkages.
The NDC Councillor said the organisers wanted to assist the farmers in the community to establish a market place where their produce can be sold regularly and at reasonable cost.
This, he said, will contribute to the development of sustainable livelihoods, the creation of economic wealth, as well as, bring positive recognition to the Mocha community.
“It is for these reasons that, we have planned the Mocha Market Day 2020,” he said of the activity which took place at the 2nd Bridge of the Mocha Main Access Road opposite ‘the big tree.” Jones noted, that with all COVID-19 protocols observed, the event was a success.
He said that the participation and turnout was equally satisfying.
We had a lot of support even from people outside the village. A lot of persons were impressed by the quality of the products, the art and craft items. The meat on sale was the big hit, it sold out quickly,” he said, adding, the general feedback is for the market day to become a common feature in the village.
The Mocha/Arcadia farmer’s market initiative was widely advertised with the backing of the international Decade for People of African Descent Assembly- Guyana (IPADA- G) and Mocha /Arcadia NDC.
During a previous interview on National Communications Network, villager and Ministry of Agriculture (MOA)’s agricultural extension officer, Mitzie Barker had related that the ultimate objective is to create sustainable economic activity for villagers.
“We have been encouraging farmers to grow more but we know that with an increase on produce, there will be a need to find market for them. This event is to allow producers to sell their home-grown and locally agro- processed items,” she said.
“There will be pepper sauce, garlic paste, dry seasoning and even a homemade ice cream on sale. It’s a multi-purpose event and we are hoping that it could become a regular feature,” Barker said of the event which showcased the products of more than forty villagers, some of whom lauded the creation of the platform to sell their goods.
Pamela Bowman, a resident of Mocha has been engaged in farming for more than a decade. She told Kaieteur News, on Saturday, prior to the event, that her products at the farmers market included packaged and labeled pepper sauces and other items.
“I have the smooth and chunky pepper sauce which I made from scratch. I grow my own peppers and seasonings,” Bowman said of the items, which were organically produced.
She expressed hope that the event will be a success, in that many villagers and people from neighbouring communities would come out to support.
Shellene Jones, another participant of the event told Kaieteur News that she ventured into agro- processing seven years ago.
Jones’ homemade chicken ham was a prominent item at the Mocha farmer/producer‘s sale event
She noted that in her opinion, the initiative could help bring awareness on the availability of products and services within the village and beyond.
“I’ve been doing this since 2012 and a lot of people in the village still don’t know that I sell chicken. So the market day sale will help people to know what is available to them right here in the village,” she added.