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Friday 6 December 2019
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First Jerk Jam in TT a hit

Chef Chelsae Marie chats with a guest. - Joan Rampersad
Chef Chelsae Marie chats with a guest. - Joan Rampersad

THE first ever Jamaica Jerk Jam to be held in TT was a hit with guests.

The event was held at the Jamaican High Commission at Newbold Street, under the patronage of High Commissioner Arthur Williams on Saturday night. He told guests: “Welcome to a little piece of Jamaica in Trinidad!”

He said Stephen Sadler, regional business manager of Grace Food for Latin America and the Caribbean, visited him five months ago. Williams said then that the high commission’s premises were ideal to put on an event. Five months later, he said: “Here we are, and I suspect that after tonight’s success, it could be an annual affair.”

Cayjah’s jerk shrimps - Joan Rampersad

John Hadad, Co-CEO of Hadco Group, said Sadler, Grace Kennedy and Hadco go back 13 years and in that time had established a wonderful synergistic relationship.

He said: “We’ve built together the Grace brand here in Trinidad.”

Hadad noted one of the chefs at the event, Jamaican Michael Nelson of TrinJam and their 12-year friendship, urging guests to enjoy his offerings, as well as from chefs, Chelsea Marie and Cayjah’s Warren Pereira, and other food stalls.

Sadler specially thanked the High Commissioner for hosting all for the event, and said nothing happens before its time.

Stephen Sadler, regional business manager Grace Foods, Latin America, left; Arthur Williams, Jamaican High Commissioner and John Hadad, Co-CEO, Hadco Group. - Joan Rampersad

“I think after 30 years of doing business in Trinidad, the time is now perfect for us to introduce today Grace Jamaica Jerk to TT. This event is the manifestation of discussions and meetings between ourselves and the High Commissioner, and sir, I want to thank you and your team for allowing us to in turn, turn these discussions into action. As we would say in Jamaica, big up to you!”

Sadler said jerk is a very important part of Jamaica’s culture and has made that country known the world over.

Cayjah’s crew - Joan Rampersad

He said: “As we continue to spread our wings to become a global consumer group, we are well aware that our regional relationships are critical to this growth. For us to experience growth in the region, we also need to share the good news of Grace with our regional counterparts and Trinidad is a great place to start.”

Chef Chelsae Marie’s jerk pork belly - Joan Rampersad

In closing, Sadler told guests: “We hope you leave this event knowing the versatility of jerk and hopefully with some new recipes of Trinidadian staples, with a Jamaican twist. Anyone for jerk doubles?”

Entertainer Kees Dieffenthaller had guests jumping during his performance. Earlier, pannist Johann Chuckaree welcomed guests.

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