Gov’t spends $15 million to distribute vouchers, produce across T&T

The Ministry of Social Development and Family Services (MSDFS) has partnered with the Ministry of Agriculture to begin distributing local food baskets across the country.

Effective May 1, each recipient will receive a $250 supermarket voucher, a bag of ground provisions, dasheen bush, pumpkin, a bag of local fruits and vegetables including pineapples, melons, melongene, a box of tomatoes, sweet peppers, cucumbers, seasoning and two chickens.

The food basket will be supplied by NAMDEVCO through its Piarco packinghouse and sourced from farmers across the country.

The people to benefit include those who are unable to access the social support grants, as well as the households with children under the School Feeding Programme that were unable to access food cards from their respective Member of Parliament (MP). 

This initiative will cost taxpayers a sum of $15,000,000.00. On Friday, Social Development Minister Camille Robinson-Regis assisted with the delivery to some of the MP Offices.

Caption: Minister Robinson-Regis distributes local food baskets and vouchers to Caroni Central MP Dr Bhoe Tewarie

Recipients will be contacted by their respective MP.

Meanwhile, in a Facebook post, Agriculture Minister Clarence Rambharat noted that 20,000 boxes will be made with produce coming from East, West, North and South of Trinidad and Tobago. The areas include Paramin, Arouca/Maloney, Wallerfield, Rio Claro, Caparo, Arima, Felicity, Plum Mitan, Valencia, Santa Cruz, Tableland, Mon Desir, Caura, Cunupia, Tabaquite, Macoya, Point Fortin, Icacos and environs. 

“Our local farmers are directly influencing what’s on the plate of our citizens receiving food assistance from the State. The veggie boxes would contain a balanced supply of in-season local veggies and fruit and two locally-raised and processed chickens. It’s a first step, a historic step and a vital step towards healthy lifestyles,” he revealed.

Namdevco certified farmers wishing to participate in the programme can contact the company’s marketing department.

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