A new Executive including a President will be fully in charge of the Grenada Association of Poultry Producers (GAPP) by early next week.
THE NEW TODAY understands that the Association held its Annual General Meeting (AGM) on August 4 at the Deluxe Cinema in Grenville, St. Andrew in which seven members were elected to fill the positions of President, Vice President, Executive Secretary, Secretary, Treasurer, and two Floor Members.
Those elected were Loxley Dick, Jeremy Thomas, Carmen Mahadeo, Philip Andrew, Iva Holas, Garvyn Pierre and Kyron Braveboy.
Outgoing GAPP President Jason Phillip reportedly did not seek re-election but will continue to serve on the Executive body as an ex-officio member.
In speaking with THE NEW TODAY on Tuesday, Phillip said there will be a meeting of the 7-member body next week in which they will identify one among them to take over the mantle of President and assign positions to other executive posts.
According to Phillip, several persons wanted him to remain in the position but he took the decision to bow out to allow for more persons to come forward to serve the executive in keeping with his thinking about the need to build capacity within the organisation.
He said the members of GAPP have to understand at this point in time the need to build up the organization in terms of leadership and to get people to take on leading roles in the event that “things happen to me or persons like me”.
“We have to have continuity. I took the position of not returning. I personally decided not to return so as a means to force our members into building capacity,” he added.
“At this stage of the game one man should not be holding the reign. This is something that is supposed to be spread and we build that capacity together so we can have a very strong and vibrant organisation moving forward,” he said.
The outgoing President stressed that he will remain on the executive for the next couple months to help with the transfer of power.
Looking back at his own performance as head of GAPP, Phillip identified one of his stand out moments as the reformation of the organisation which started in November 2019 to put it on a sound footing to be better able to serve the interests of poultry farmers.
He cited the ability to bring in feed for poultry farmers from outside of the island at the heights of the coronavirus pandemic around the middle of last year when the local plant at Caribbean Agro Industries (CAI) was forced to shut due to the discovery of a Covid-19 cluster.
“We were able to save an entire industry during one of the most gruesome occurrences that ever occurred for us as farmers,” he said.
Phillip was proud of the fact that GAPP was able to successfully lobby the government to help with the process of bringing in the shipment of animal feed.
He noted that this was done without what he referred to as “the financial support and otherwise of some of the main players who had the resources” but did not come to their assistance and this should be viewed as another huge achievement of the body.
The outgoing GAPP boss sees one of the major goals of the newly installed executive as the battle to continue with the resuscitation of the organization and to continue to forge relations with several entities such as the state-owned Marketing & National Importing Board (MNIB).
In addition, he said the body will continue to press ahead in discussions with government on several outstanding issues like the unfortunate hikes in poultry and animal feed by Caribbean Agro and the poor extension services provided by the Ministry of Agriculture.
“We have an entire industry that needs developing….,” he said.
THE NEW TODAY understands that when Covid-19 struck the island GAPP had just over 350 members but the number is now over 500 as a decision was taken to engage all poultry farmers in Grenada including Carriacou & Petite Martinique as stakeholders in the industry.