The project grant initiative is an implementation of the National Industrial Policy to elevate agro-based manufacturing industries to diversify and add value to their primary products for domestic and export markets.
It is a small grant from the Government, through the Ministry of Finance and Economic management as appropriated by Parliament to support Industry and cottage rural-based SMEs producers that have valid industrial permits.
The producers must be currently engaged in processing of value added Vanuatu-Made products of raw materials sourced within the country and have strong potential for increasing exports.
The fund has a steering committee co-chaired by the DOI Director and Director of Agriculture.
There is a set of criteria to fund small hardware infrastructure project inputs such as new processing equipment, freight costs for exports and costs of raw materials for expansion and new products that are in their research and development phase, particularly for the following selected value chains: kava, cocoa, coffee, essential oils, root-crops and fish.
The handing over by DOI Director, Jimmy Rantes, to the manufacturers last week is considered timely with the recently launched Vanuatu-Made brand to start promoting and waving its pride in terms of trade in goods that Vanuatu has comparative advantage such as (Kava, beef, sandalwood, coconut, cocoa and fish).
Fine Foods is an innovative food processing company that focuses on the nutraceutical value of foods found in Vanuatu. Its motto is “let food be thy medicine”.
Bruns Exports and Farmers Association also benefited from the small grant to undertake research and development trials on the production of Kava Instant juice.
Director Rantes presented the fund support to Bruns Exports and Farmers Association