Banyan Foods: Jamosas

Counting Down To The 20th Staging Of The Jamaica Observer Table Talk Food Awards, Thursday, May 31, 2018

Thursday, May 03, 2018

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I made these products because... of a general need for more convenience foods which are tasty and have little or no preservatives or hidden ingredients. As a caterer I experienced first-hand the pains it took to prepare especially appetisers. So I wanted to come up with a product that would fill this need/void. I currently supply a few other caterers, restaurants and hotels.

My major challenge is... prior to making this product there was an inconsistent supply of the main ingredients in the original samosa. Then the idea came to use what's available as alternate ingredients.

The product is now available at... Loshusan, General Foods (Liguanea & Ocho Rios) and Fresh Approach. We also have agreements with Hi-Lo, CPJ, Two Hampers & A Mule (Norman Manley International Airport) and Reggae Mart (Sangster International Airport) to carry it within the next month.

The response to the products has been... great so far. We just introduced the product commercially in February of this year.

Our core customers are... members of middle to upper-income households who are looking for convenience. Vegetarians and those who want to “eat clean” love the vegetarian options available, as well. Also, through the airport stores we are targeting the diaspora and visitors who want to take back a taste of Jamaica.

I plan to grow the business... by increasing distribution especially in the hotel sector and eventually export.

My first breakthrough came when... we had that really bad drought in 2015. Potatoes being the main ingredient in samosas (which I was making) became very scarce and that got me very worried. Then the idea to use alternate available ingredients came to mind. I started experimenting with different combinations of ingredients and came up with what I believe is a winner. I basically took the typical Jamaican cuisine and some family recipes coming from my great-grandmother and decided to put them in a pocket.

Jamaicans should support my products because... they are 100% Jamaican. I like to think of jamosas as a Jamaican meal in a pocket. They are great anytime food items as they are quite filling and I think the variety is what the customers really like.They are wholesome (nothing hidden), delicious and easy to prepare (under 15 minutes).

My product is successful because... it's unique and due to its wide variety, there's a flavour to suit everyone's palate.

If I knew then what I know now... I'd have started making jamosas since inception of the business four years ago! But nothing before its time as it took years of experimenting and trying to get it just right.

Address: 9 Cargill Avenue,
Kingston 10
Tel: 630-8045/545-8587




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