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Guyana’s newest trade and agro-processing fair, ‘Uncapped’, is billed for the Sophia Exhibition Complex from October 27 to 29, 2017.The three-day exhibition, food festival and culture show is a collaborative effort between the Government of Guyana, private enterprises, and the Guyana Manufacturing and Services Association (GMSA).President of the GMSA, Shyam Nokta, is quoted by the Department of Public Information (DPI) as saying that the idea behind ‘Uncapped’ is to bring together both large and small agro-producers, entities involved in supporting agro-processing, and agencies and institutions to ensure their products can meet market requirements and access markets.GMSA President Shyam NoktaNokta said the trade fair would also feature a food festival which would provide opportunity to showcase what is being produced locally. Moreover, Uncapped would allow businesses to explore the prospect of working together to create awareness, and promote and expand the agro-processing sector to meet domestic needs, Caribbean needs, and markets further afield.Acknowledging that there are many challenges faced by the local agro-processing sector, Nokta said the work must begin somewhere if the sector is to move forward.“For many years, we have been talking about our potential to not only feed the Caribbean, but to look wider afield. The GMSA recognises that there are many challenges for us to be able to do this, and they range from packaging and marketing to being able to access regional and international markets, and meeting all the requirements. But we felt that, first, we need to start creating the awareness right here at home, because there are many people doing good things that we are not aware of. Why should we have products coming from external sources when those very same products we can make right here?” Nokta reasoned.Meanwhile, Ramsay Ali, Vice President of the GMSA and Events Manager of ‘Uncapped’, emphasised the importance of business owners moving the local agro-processing sector forward. “We are encouraging the shop owners of Guyana — all the shop owners — to come to this event to see exactly what Guyanese are producing that can be used locally instead of imported stuff. We have some good Guyanese products here, but (producers) need help from the Guyanese storekeepers to put those products on their shelves and promote them.”The three-day event will feature an opening ceremony at 17:00hrs on Friday, 27th October. A number of Government officials, including President David Granger and Minister of Business, Dominic Gaskin, are slated to be at the event.A Culture Night, featuring many local artistes, inclusive of Terry Gajraj and the cast of ‘Nothing to Laugh About’ and Shakti Strings band, will be on Saturday, October 28.The agro fair culminates on Sunday, October 29th, with “a grand” local food festival sponsored by the Demerara Distillers Limited (DDL). According to the organisers, twelve iconic food restaurants in Guyana have been invited to participate, so persons attending would be able to experience and enjoy all the local flavours offered.Other sponsors of the first-time event include IPED, Edward Beharry and Company, Sterling Products Limited, Impressions, Republic Bank, and Banks DIH.