Last summer, the Caribbean island of Saba -known to be the smallest special municipality of the Netherlands- approved a project to investigate possibilities to accomplish a more reliable supply of fresh produce in terms of availability, quality and price.
As part of this project, a new supply line from Miami to Saba will be tested later this week by the Big Rock and Unique supermarkets. This should lead to the availability of more high-quality fresh produce that remains fresh longer.
Events have shown that securing a supply of fresh produce in Saba remains a challenge. At the start of the COVID-19 pandemic in March last year, it became clear that the supply of fresh fruit and vegetables from St. Maarten stagnated. Because Saba is not fully self-sufficient, this quickly led to shortages on the island.
Thedailyherald.sx reports that, combined with the hurricane season and aware of the responsibility that the government has to ensure the basic needs of the community, the public entity decided to look for solutions to improve the continuity of supply of fresh produce.
Although the supply route Miami-St. Maarten-Saba has existed for decades, long transportation times, combined with incorrect temperature regulation and product handling, lead to faster deterioration of fresh products, resulting in more food waste, which leads to higher prices in Saba.
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