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MIAS receives IDB funding for Castor research and development

Jamaica’s castor oil sector is barely earning from exports, and is seen as woefully underperforming its potential, but its producers are regrouping.

Now, the four-year-old Castor Industry Association, JCIA, is awaiting final word on a $500-million development package from the Government and land space to improve production of the bean.

At peak, the sector earned just US$208,000 from exports in 2015. In the most recent data available, those earnings collapsed to US$36,000 two years later. Comparatively, the global market is worth about US$100 million, with the United States accounting for US$28 million of that consumption.

However, a Compete Caribbean study released in January 2019, has estimated the economic value of the castor oil market, excluding lubricants and commercial industrial products, at US$187 m­illion, of which Jamaican black castor oil accounted for US$28 million.

 

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