Photo Caption: Sorrel, ginger and spices are must-haves for Jamaicans at Christmas. Photo: CaribbeanPot
As the Christmas season intensifies, Jamaicans in the Diaspora are missing more than being with their loved ones and friends. For them, it’s also a time when they long for the traditional goodies that accompanies the season – sorrel, wine, pastries and ginger. These are some of the many products for which they clamour.
This is good news and an opportunity for those who specialize in the exportation of these products and as marketing specialist Dave Rodney reveals, during Christmas, sales of Jamaican products intensifies in the Diaspora.
“I think it is probably the biggest season of the year for sales of Jamaican products, because you have things being sold like crazy from as early as Thanksgiving,” he told Dobusinessjamaica.com.
Rodney said products that move quickly off the shelves during this time of the year are Jamaican ginger, spices, sauces, red label wine, Jamaican beverages, coconut water, jerk seasoning and tropical juices.
He also pointed out that there are others that may not have originated out of Jamaica but have been packaged and distributed from Jamaica so the country still benefits.
“The demand for Jamaican product is endless this time of the year…some Jamaican and West Indian stores completely sold out from as early as Thanksgiving and have had to restock,” he shared.
Rodney said the reason for the spike in sales can be tied to family reunions, parties, gatherings, celebrations, groups and church socials and other functions that Jamaicans host this time of the year.
“Christmas is the largest celebration for Jamaicans. It is even bigger than Thanksgiving,” he pointed out adding that for weeks before the big day arrives, there is constant traffic in the Caribbean and West Indian stores as Jamaicans start their Christmas shopping early.
Jamaicans at home are not the only ones who benefit financially during the Christmas season. Those in the Diaspora can earn extra cash by putting their culinary skills to good use baking fruit cakes, making sorrel drinks and other home favourites for the season.
Rodney said even farmers at home who do not export their products can still make holiday cash from vacationing Jamaicans looking to stock up on ‘goodies’ such as roasted breadfruit, sorrel, cane among other produce ensuring they leave the island with their fill.
“Overseas, Jamaicans are buying products in big quantities for the holiday celebration and that can only benefit the economy,” Rodney shared.
Sharing a first-hand experience on how much the home delights is treasured, Rodney said he recently went to Good Dime, a breakfast place in the Bronx on a Wednesday morning at 5:30 am and the eatery was jam-packed!
“They were offering all the delights that Jamaicans want to have – roasted breadfruit, ackee, curry chicken – all these stuff that people want coming from holiday parties” he said.