Jamaica Grains and Cereals Limited, owned by joint-venture partners Seaboard and Seprod, launched its $3-billion grain mill on Thursday, arguing that it marks the start of the reclamation of the local flour market from imports.

The company has already placed a flour product on the retail market, branded Gold Seal.

"Jamaica sat back and treated manufacturing like a bastard child and sought to be just an importer and distributor of goods. It is time that we stand up and take back what is rightfully ours," said Seprod CEO Richard Pandohie at the formal launch of the factory on Thursday morning.

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