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Dec 19, 2014

Farmers to Receive Fairtrade Monies

Audrey Matura-Shepherd

The N.T.U.C.B. says one of its biggest concerns is the hardship to farmers who, Matura-Shepherd claims have been negotiating under economic duress. She’s said that Prime Minister Dean Barrow should roll the Petrocaribe up north, but in the absence of that, Fairtrade money will have to do. On Sunday cane-farmers passed a motion for two point five million in Fairtrade funds, held by the Association, to be disbursed immediately. The money in hand sounds good, especially to the farmers, even as the Association cautions possible repercussions from Fairtrade. But it’s going to happen, repercussions or not.

 

Audrey Matura-Shepherd, Representative, N.T.U.C.B.

“Thank God for the fair-trade agreement; there is a two point five million dollars that they can use in terms of emergency that we are recommended that be dispersed immediately by Monday to hold over the farmers so that they have time to negotiate properly and get something more.”

 

Ezekiel Cansino, Chairman, Committee of Management, B.S.C.F.A.

Ezekiel Cansino

“I personally keep on saying that this can bring to the organization maybe some compliance with the fair-trade standards. But as I said on Sunday, the decision has been made by the assembly so we will execute that decision.”

 

Mike Rudon

“Miss Matura-Shepherd was speaking that this constitutes an emergency and that the money, she said something to the effect, that the money can be used for this emergency. You think you all can get away with that by calling this an emergency?”

 

Ezekiel Cansino

“I can’t actually say if that is true or maybe it will be an excuse of using that money. But anyway we will see what fair-trade standards will advise us or whatever. But we feel that we might have some difficulties on that regard.”

 

The two point five million dollars will be disbursed to all five thousand plus farmers equally, regardless of how much cane they delivered to the factory during the last crop season.

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