The Grenada Cooperative Nutmeg Association (GCNA) is offering farmers an organic medium for the growth of healthy seedlings and plants, via its Nutmoss Potting Mix.
The value-added product, which comprises crushed, decomposed nutmeg shells, serves as a replacement to the usual potting mix used by farmers for seed germination.
While not much was revealed on the real benefits of the nutmeg shells, the Association recently introduced the new product to members of the business community via a demonstration session at the Caribbean Agriculture and Research Development Institute (CARDI) at Westerhall, Saint David.
In attendance were persons from businesses which focus on agriculture and agriculture products, as well as, nursery operators such as Renwick and Thompson, Geo F. Huggins (Farm and Garden), PJ & L Enterprise Ltd, and LL Ramdhanny & Company LTD.
The participants welcomed the new product expressing that it will be beneficial to local farmers.
The session was facilitated by CARDI local representative, Reginald Andall who presented on the use and application of the product using plants from the institute’s nursery. “It’s different to the imported Peat moss, it’s a different material and so one has to adjust oneself to using it…it fits very well into one’s vegetable seedling production,” he said.
Representative from the Ministry of Agriculture, Ronald O’Neale, said this development is significant because it presents an avenue for income generation for the GCNA.
He explained, “for every thousand pounds of nutmeg that is processed by the GCNA, 300 pounds of nutmeg shells are generated. So if we consider that last year around 600 tons of nutmegs were exported by the GCNA…we have about 400,000 pounds of nutmeg shells being generated as a result.”
Nutmeg shells were mostly used for mulching in the garden.