EXCLUDING the optional condiments, Minister of Agriculture, Land and Fisheries Clarence Rambharat says doubles is "100 per cent imported content (foods)." He questioned its popularity, referring to it as the "national dish."
He was speaking at the Point Fortin Borough Corporation's grow box distribution at the Fanny Village Recreational Ground on Monday morning.
While he said he has no issue with the sale and purchase of doubles, he urged the public to support local farmers by buying foods with locally-produced ingredients.
"Our big imports are, of course, things that we need. Rice, flour, sugar...those things are things that we need. But do we need so much? Do we need doubles to be the national dish of this country? And not just national dish at a certain time. National breakfast, national lunch and national dinner.
"I don't have any problem with a bara ever so often. But to see people dressed for work in all their fineries, 5 am and 6 am standing up by a doubles man and then coming back lunchtime by a next doubles man."
He said while he was hopeful the covid19 pandemic caused people to opt for more healthy options, he was disappointed by the viral challenge encouraging people to make doubles at home and post pictures to social media.
"Doubles is 100 per cent non-local content. There is no local content.
"When you get your doubles in your hand, you might add some cucumber, local pepper, tamarind and those things. But doubles is almost totally imported content. Why should we be aiming for that? And why have we made that the national snack and the national food?"
He said the covid19 pandemic showed him "how twisted we could be as individuals."
He reminded the public of its responsibility in ensuring food security.
"What you put in your fridge, what you put in your cupboard determines the success of your farmers right here."