Tibu Impex Inc. - Guyana
Tibu Impex Inc is a small wholesale and retail business in Guyana which re-packages and processes a variety of fresh and frozen seafood including shrimp, red snapper, butter fish, crabmeat, and shark among others. They also produce smoked fish. From their processing plant in Georgetown, they supply several hotels, restaurants, and supermarkets, and cater to walk-in customers at their retail outlet.
Renita Joseph, Managing Director, Tibu Impex Inc reflected on her rise in business, “I started off as a small fish processing company, at that time I did not have any knowledge about food safety systems. I had to learn along the way. We do not have a training facility for staff, and many persons start off in this industry like me with no knowledge about these issues.” Joseph stated that the training provided by the 11th EDF SPS Measures Project has increased her confidence as well as that of her team, “We are now putting these food safety best practices into practice. In fact, our annual health inspection is coming up and with this training I am excited to show them what we have learnt and the improvements that we have made thus far.”
All eight members of the Tibu Impex Inc. team were trained on Food Safety, HACCP guidelines and Traceability. “With the high rotation of staff in this industry, sustainability of the programme was very important to us. I am now trained as a trainer, and I also have access to electronic recordings of the training to share with new team members and to conduct refresher programmes as needed,” Joseph added.
As a past exporter, Joseph hopes that the training will help her to re-enter export markets as she is now producing a higher quality, safer product, “I hope that this training will give us an advantage and make us more competitive in the international market. We used to export to the United States (US) and parts of the Caribbean however due to the COVID-19 pandemic those efforts fell back. With this new training I am considering opening an outlet in the US, exporting my own brand and using my own packaging.”
High in praise of the trainers, Joseph said that she was particularly impressed with the teaching methodology, “A big challenge in training in the fishing industry is the ability to break down academic concepts so that all levels of staff will understand. The trainers were able to accomplish this. As small fisheries, we don’t often get access to these types of activities, especially training. I was very lucky to access this, and it will make a difference in the future of our operations.”