IICA-COLEACP Caribbean Agrifood Business Series

EVENTS

Promoting Bioeconomy and Green Businesses in the Caribbean: opportunities for SMEs

Session N°2
Promoting Bioeconomy and Green Businesses in the Caribbean: opportunities for SMEs
25th August 2021 – 10:00-12:00 (EST)

Background

The bioeconomy is an adequate framework for the harmonization of policies required for the implementation of the 2030 Agenda, supporting in an integrated manner the SDGs in the social, environmental and economic fields. Transitioning to a circular economy is critical for achieving the targets of the Paris Agreement and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Through the use of new sciences and technologies, the bioeconomy allows for more productive and sustainable use of biological resources, generating plant and animal materials that are more productive, disease-resistant and environmentally-friendly. It facilitates the use of biomass (including residue and waste) to produce new high value-added bioproducts, such as food, bioenergy and other biomaterials for the cosmetic, pharmaceutical and chemical industries, among others. It also spawns a range of new services (applied in the fields of human, plant and animal health, environmental bioremediation and in various preexisting activities) and increases the value of biodiversity.
Read more here.

PROGRAMME
25th August 2021 – 10:00-12:00 (EST)

10:00-10:10 Introduction and Moderator:

  • Ena Harvey, IICA Representative, Barbados

10:10-11:00 Panel: Experiences from businesses

  • Johanan Dujon, founder and CEO, Algas Organics, St Lucia
  • Gustavo Gandini, Organic Agricultural, Biodiversity and Environment Coordinator, Banelino, Dominican Republic
  • Nigel Jordan, co-founder and CEO, Twigs Naturals, Trinidad and Tobago

Moderator: Isolina Boto, Head of Networks and Alliances, COLEACP

11:00-11:25 Insights from partners and experts
This session will include inputs from experts representing policy-makers, research and
finance.

  • Ricardo M. James, Senior Technical Specialist, Business Environment and Export Development, OECS
  • Guy Faure, Senior Policy Officer, INTPA F3 Sustainable Agri-Food systems and Fisheries, European Commission
  • Guillaume Simões, Investment Officer, EDFI AgriFI

11:25-11:50 Q&A session
11:50-12:00 Way forward and closure

  • Insights from Escipión J. Oliveira Gómez, Assistant Secretary General, Structural Economic Transformation and Trade, OACPS

Videos

Speakers

  • Isolina BOTO – Head of Networks and Alliances, COLEACP

    Isolina BOTO – Head of Networks and Alliances, COLEACP

    Isolina Boto is the Head of Networks and Alliances at COLEACP, a non-profit association of private sector operators in the agrifood sector active in the European Union (EU), Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific (ACP) regions. Isolina has more than 25 years of experience in agricultural development. She started her career with the European Commission and has also worked with various ACP embassies and NGOs in areas related to food security, rural development and trade. Before joining COLEACP, she was the Manager of the Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation ACP-EU (CTA) Brussels Office (2004-2020) implementing policy initiatives related to the ACP-EU cooperation in the field of the agrifood sector. She has led agribusiness projects in support of capacity development of small and medium enterprises (SMEs), entrepreneurs and farmers organisations across Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific and developed agrotourism aimed at linking agriculture and tourism sectors.

  • Johanan DUJON – Founder and CEO, Algas Organics, St Lucia

     Johanan DUJON – Founder and CEO, Algas Organics, St Lucia

    Johanan Dujon is the founder and CEO of Algas Organics, the Caribbean’s first indigenous agriculture biotechnology company. Algas Organics is fighting the invasive sargassum-seaweed that has been spoiling Caribbean beaches and devasting marine life since 2011. Algas Organics converts sargassum-seaweed into organic agricultural inputs such as fungicides, pesticides, and crop fertilizers to improve crop resilience and increase yields without harming their users or damaging the environment. Johanan Dujon has been recognized for his innovation locally and internationally and received, among others, following distinctions: Forbes 30 Under 30 2020 in the Manufacturing and Industry category, the Commonwealth Youth Award For Excellence in Development 2019, Forbes 2019, Young Leader of the Americas 2018, OECS Top 30 Entrepreneur under 30 2017, Young Entrepreneur of the year 2017. He holds a degree in Business Studies from Sir Arthur Lewis Community College, St Lucia.

  • Guy FAURE – Senior Policy Officer, INTPA F3 Sustainable Agri-Food systems and Fisheries, European Commission

    Guy FAURE – Senior Policy Officer, INTPA F3 Sustainable Agri-Food systems and Fisheries, European Commission

    Dr. Guy Faure is posted at the European Commission (DG INTPA) as expert supporting EU research and innovation programs such as the DeSIRA initiative (Capacity4dev | Connecting the Development Community (europa.eu)) and participating in policy dialogue (UN Food Summit System (UNFSS), One CGIAR, etc.). Previously he worked at the French Agricultural Research Centre for International Development (CIRAD) as director of the research unit “innovation and development” leading research on advisory services, innovation support services and impact of research with the perspective to contribute to the agroecological transition of food systems.

  • Gustavo GANDINI – Organic Agricultural, Biodiversity and Environment Coordinator, Banelino, Dominican Republic

    Gustavo GANDINI – Organic Agricultural, Biodiversity and Environment Coordinator, Banelino, Dominican Republic

    Gustavo Gandini, an expert on sustainable agriculture, is the director of the Organic Agriculture, Biodiversity and Environment division of BANELINO, Dominican Republic, which participated in the United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean’s (ECLAC) carbon footprint and exports project. BANELINO is the Ecological Bananas Association of the Northwest Line, an exporting group of organic, certified bananas (certified Fair Trade and GlobalG.A.P amongst others). Gustavo Gandini completed his undergraduate studies at the Panamerican Agricultural School, El Zamorano, Honduras. He also has postgraduate diplomas in Plant Protection and Biological Production Supplies from the Plant Health Research Institute in Cuba; and in Organic Farming from the University of Francisco Merino, Dominican Republic.

  • Ena HARVEY – IICA Representative, Barbados

    Ena HARVEY – IICA Representative, Barbados

    Ena Harvey is the Agribusiness Specialist in Agrotourism with IICA (InterAmerican Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture) and from May 2002, she is the IICA Representative in Barbados. Prior to joining IICA, she held the post of Food Technologist with the Caribbean Industrial Research Institute (CARIRI) in Trinidad from 1982-1987 assisting private sector with commercialisation of smallscale processing operations. From 1987 to 2002, she worked as a private consultant to several regional and international agencies, Trade Promotion agencies, Government Ministries, and NGOs on projects covering trade, export competitiveness, food security, education and training, sustainable agroindustrial development and agrotourism. During this time, she also served as the Caribbean agro-industry expert to the Centre for the Development of Enterprise/ Centre for the Development of Industry (CDE/ CDI) (Brussels) for 5 years, and regional agro-industry expert under a 4-year Canadian funded CIDA-CPEC (Canadian International Development Agency – Caribbean Program for Economic Competitiveness) Human Resources Development (HRD) programme on economic competitiveness, supporting private sector development in Jamaica, Suriname, Barbados, the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) and Belize.

  • Ricardo M. JAMES – Senior Technical Specialist, Business Environment and Export Development, OECS

    Ricardo M. JAMES – Senior Technical Specialist, Business Environment and Export Development, OECS

    Ricardo James is since 2018 Senior Technical Specialist for Business Environment and Export Development at the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) for the Competitive Business Unit (CBU). He is responsible for contributing to and advancing the development and strengthening of the policy, legislative and regulatory frameworks for micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) competitiveness trade and exports in the OECS. From 2008 to 2018, Ricardo James headed the Permanent Delegation of the OECS in Geneva as Charge d’Affaires and was responsible for advancing the trade and development interests of the OECS in the multilateral trading system at the World Trade Organisation (WTO). He was the lead technical spokesperson for the African Caribbean Pacific (ACP) Group of Countries in the negotiations on trade facilitation and fisheries subsidies rules. From 1995 to 2008, Ricardo James worked for the Government of Dominica in the Ministry responsible for Trade from contributing to and later spearheading the formulation and implementation of Dominica’s trade policy at the national, regional and multilateral level, including representing Dominica in the negotiations towards the conclusion of the CARIFORUM-EU EPA negotiations in 2007.

  • Nigel JORDAN – Co-founder and CEO, Twigs Naturals, Trinidad and Tobago

    Nigel JORDAN – Co-founder and CEO, Twigs Naturals, Trinidad and Tobago

    Nigel Jordan is he co-founder and CEO of Twigs Naturals, a local green-blue enterprise created in 2016 that makes 100% natural herbal teas in Arima, Trinidad using all-natural ingredients. The various types of tea include mint, lemongrass, garlic, ginger, orange peel, bamboo, moringa etc. Twigs Naturals seeks to give back to its community by hiring people, mainly single mothers, who would otherwise find it difficult to get a job that pays a decent wage. The company also participates in events promoting environmental sustainability to build its network of suppliers and consumers. Twigs Naturals was named Start Up Entrepreneur of the Year 2017 by the Trinidad and Tobago Chamber of Industry and Commerce at its annual Champions of Business Awards. Internationally, its Caribbean Christmas Tea and Mint Tea earned top spots at the 2017 Global Tea Championship.

  • Escipión J. OLIVEIRA GÓMEZ – Assistant Secretary General, Structural Economic Transformation and Trade, OACPS

    Escipión J. OLIVEIRA GÓMEZ – Assistant Secretary General, Structural Economic Transformation and Trade, OACPS

    Escipión Oliveira joined the Organisation of African, Caribbean and Pacific States (OACPS) in July 2020 as Assistant Secretary-General in charge of the Department of Structural Economic Transformation and Trade. Prior to his appointment and since 2011, he was the Deputy Executive Director of Caribbean Export Agency. Escipión Oliveira is a national of the Dominican Republic with over 20 years of experience in the development, management, supervision and evaluation of multi-donor programs and projects for the creation and strengthening of small and mediumsized enterprises (SMEs) and intermediary organizations in developing countries. Escipión Oliveira holds a master’s degree in business administration with a specialization in finance and has a graduate degree in business from Catholic University of Leuven (UCL), Belgium, as well as a bachelor’s degree in economics from the Santo Domingo Institute of Technology, Dominican Republic.

  • Guillaume SIMÕES – Investment Officer, EDFI AgriFI

    Guillaume SIMÕES – Investment Officer, EDFI AgriFI

    Guillaume Simoes is working as an Investment Officer at EDFIMCAgriFI, an EU-funded blending facility that aims to leverage sustainable investments in developing countries, focusing on smallholder’s inclusiveness and agricultural small and medium enterprises (SMEs). He has an extensive experience in implementing sustainable development and investment strategies in Africa and Latin-America with a specific focus on agricultural value chains. Guillaume graduated with a Master degree in economics and International Development at the CERDI (Centre d’Etudes et de Recherches sur le Développement International) in 2012 and with a Msc in Business Administration at Católica Lisbon School of Business and Economics in 2014. He is fluent in English, French, Portuguese and Spanish and enjoys nature.



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