Archive for the 'Food' Category

Harness the best cocoa in the world

By Raffique Shah
May 16, 2018

Raffique ShahSometimes it pays to stay aloof of the noise that tends to pollute discussions on issues as important as the state of the national economy and efforts to resuscitate it. Last week, Finance Minister Colm Imbert’s mid-year review of the fiscal 2017-2018 Budget, which has been elevated to a media event, degenerated into a political slugfest involving several prominent economists and political commentators, and cantankerous Colm.
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Man must eat—but so much junk?

By Raffique Shah
September 05, 2016

Raffique ShahEven as most people cry out loudly about the state of the national economy, relating sad stories about the hard times they face, the high prices of almost everything and the unavailability of some things, especially critical medications, a Starbucks coffee house opened its doors for business last week.

According to news reports, scores of customers queued on the pavement outside the business, eagerly awaiting the opportunity to buy their first “cuppa” from the famous American-owned international chain. Prices range from $42 down.
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Battle against be-suited bandits

By Raffique Shah
April 21, 2016

Raffique ShahI find it almost amusing that some grocers who are caught dipping their greedy hands deep inside the inside consumers’ pockets, cry foul when their names and outrageously high prices are exposed through advertisements posted by the Consumer Affairs Division of the Ministry of Trade.

In immediate response to being named as selling certain foodstuff way above the norm in the business, they claim the prices attributed to their establishments were wrong, and they issued “corrected” versions that were between $5 and $10 cheaper-per item.
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Descent into imports-dependence

By Raffique Shah
April 05, 2016
Posted: April 10, 2016

Raffique ShahWhat I established last week was that Trinidad and Tobago, like most small island states that were once colonised by imperial powers, relies heavily on imported foods for its sustenance.

All our staples-grains (wheat, rice, maize), dairy products (milk, cheese, butter), sugar, edible oils, white potatoes, beans and pulses-come from abroad, mainly North America, the EU, Australia and New Zealand.
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Doomed to importing foods

By Raffique Shah
April 03, 2016

Raffique ShahRecently, there has been much noise over Trinidad and Tobago’s capacity to produce the foods that we eat.

I use the word “noise” instead of discussion or debate because so much of what is said and written is uninformed.
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Waste worse than corruption

By Raffique Shah
March 25, 2016

Raffique ShahA recent World Bank report ranked Trinidad and Tobago as the country that generates the most “municipal solid waste”, on a per capita basis, in the world.

According to the report, every man, woman and child in this country, on average, every day, generates a mind-boggling 14.4 kilogrammes of garbage:

The world average is 1.2 kilos.
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Citizens to pay more for food

No more VAT for 1,300 businesses

By Richard Lord
January 11, 2016 – guardian.co.tt

Colm ImbertFinance Minister Colm Imbert reads the price of oil from his cellphone while Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley looks on attentively during the sitting of Parliament yesterday. PHOTO: MARCUS GONZALES

While an estimated 1,300 businesses will no longer have to pay Value Added Tax (VAT) from next month, thousands of citizens will have to dig deeper in their pockets to buy several items, such as rice (except parboiled and boiled), flour (except all purpose and wheat), coffee, orange and grapefruit juices, mauby, tea and tomato ketchup.
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From Cabbage Patch to Concrete Jungle

By Stephen Kangal
February 06, 2013

Stephen KangalWhile the Minister of Planning and Sustainable Development Dr the Honourable Bhoe Tiwari is romanticizing in the spills, drills and thrills of the imagination at the expense of not giving his ministerial attention to the issues at the ground level relating to the protection and conservation of our fertile arable soils to support a thriving and sustainable food farming industry geared to foster and promote the agenda for achieving food sovereignty and security, we are now witnessing before our very eyes a cruel and ruthless desecration of the lands of the traditional food basket of Aranguez by an incipient and expanding concrete and steel jungle.
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The Closure of Caroni (1975) Limited

Politics before food

Sugar and Energy Festival Street Parade: October 09, 2005
Sugar and Energy Festival Street Parade – October 09, 2005

By Andre Bagoo
May 18 2013 – newsday.co.tt

THE CLOSURE of Caroni (1975) Limited and consequent devastating impact on the agriculture sector and TT’s food security, may be directly linked to political considerations surrounding the then PNM government’s fear of a repeat of the 18-18 general election deadlock of 2001, Tourism Minister Stephen Cadiz said yesterday.
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Food for Thought

By Raffique Shah
October 20, 2012

Raffique ShahMOST times I stay silent when I listen to people in authority or those who think they know it all say the wildest things. But there are times when I feel compelled to intervene, mostly when I think too much is at stake. This is one such intervention. For many years, but more so since the global food crisis of 2007-08, politicians and governments would vow to put this country’s food production on a growth path that would take us to full food security.
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