Jamaican News

Jamaica Blue Mountain Coffee Festival Eyes Expansion Across the Island

In a bid to enhance its reach and impact, the Jamaica Blue Mountain Coffee Festival, organized by the Ministry of Tourism’s Tourism Enhancement Fund (TEF), is considering expansion to various locations across the island.

During an interview at the seventh staging of the festival held in Newcastle, St. Andrew, Minister of Tourism, Hon. Edmund Bartlett, revealed plans to extend the festival’s footprint beyond its current location. Minister Bartlett emphasized the necessity of private-sector involvement to bolster the festival’s presence and make it more accessible to a wider audience.

“We’ve been talking about expanding to different locations across Jamaica…and we think it is at the point where a heavier private-sector intrusion is necessary to give it more legs, more body, and to take it beyond the Newcastle location,” Minister Bartlett stated.

Potential expansion sites include Mandeville, Montego Bay, Port Antonio, and other areas, reflecting a strategic vision to decentralize the festival and showcase Jamaica’s rich coffee culture nationwide.

While the Ministry of Tourism does not directly manage Jamaica’s coffee industry, it plays a pivotal role in promoting it through events like the Jamaica Blue Mountain Coffee Festival. Minister Bartlett stressed the importance of marketing initiatives in elevating awareness of Jamaica’s renowned coffee brand on the global stage.

“We are going to continue to do that – the messaging is important. We work with the brand and we expand the knowledge of the brand by doing the necessary marketing that is required,” Minister Bartlett affirmed.

With 59 booth holders participating in this year’s festival, local coffee producers benefited from opportunities to showcase and sell their products. The festival not only promotes Jamaica’s position as a producer of premium coffee but also supports economic growth and sustainability within the coffee industry.

The Jamaica Blue Mountain Coffee Festival stands as a flagship event for the Ministry of Tourism, aligning with its broader objectives of leveraging gastronomy to diversify Jamaica’s tourism product. Through ongoing efforts to promote and expand the festival, the Ministry aims to solidify Jamaica’s reputation as a premier destination for coffee enthusiasts while fostering community development and economic prosperity across the island.

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