The Government of St. Kitts and Nevis is prioritizing agricultural tourism as a means of creating meaningful immersive experiences for visitors. Additionally the Government of St. Kitts and Nevis prioritizes sustainability as a cornerstone of its tourism and agricultural sectors, and incorporates the following key values into tourism and agricultural management:
∙ sustainable practices to protect and promote the environment and natural resources ∙ protection, promotion, and heavy focus on local culture and heritage
∙ maximizing economic benefits for local people and local, small businesses at every opportunity, and
∙ incorporating information about environmental sustainability and local culture and heritage into the visitor experience, for the education and awareness of visitors and locals alike.
The St. Kitts Ministry of Tourism (Ministry of Tourism) is seeking an experienced consultant (Consultant) to assist with a planned agricultural tourism initiative focused on growing, and manufacturing select products from, cannabis.
2. SERVICES REQUESTED
The Consultant will advise and assist the Ministry of Tourism, in consultation with the St. Kitts Ministry of Agriculture (Ministry of Agriculture) , in the planning and launch of a robust cannabis growing operation, development of select cannabis products, and retail sales of those products within a designated area on St. Kitts. This is to include:
(1) planning and assistance setting up, beginning to implement, and systematizing operations to successfully grow an array of marijuana strains
(2) providing summary information and a list of resources for further information about the crop in general, and specific strains, and their uses and benefits, as well as historic, natural, and cultural significance, and
(3) support planning for the manufacture of an array of cannabis products to be sold at retail in St. Kitts, and assistance overseeing a successful first phase of production of those cannabis products.
Specific services requested are:
(1) Cannabis Cultivation. The Consultant will work with the Ministry of Tourism, in consultation with the Ministry of Agriculture, to develop and execute a plan to launch a successful cannabis growing operation, including::
∙ determining the optimal location for growing at a scale mutually agreed with the Ministry of Tourism
∙ identifying, and generating a budget for, all set-up and operational needs (and their costs) for cannabis cultivation
∙ identifying, and generating a budget for, development and launch of cannabis revenue generating opportunities—including tours and experiences and preparation of select products for sale at retail featuring cannabis
∙ developing a business plan for the cannabis initiative
∙ identifying, and assisting in the ordering and set-up of equipment, and monitoring and execution of the plan to begin cultivating the cannabis crop, through a mutually agreed point of successful launch and execution
∙ building capacity among the Ministries of Tourism and Agriculture and a cohort of additional designated persons locally to manage cannabis cultivation—and expand it if desired in future—including a guidebook of instructions for growing and maintaining cannabis.
The Consultant will work with the Ministries of Tourism and Agriculture to understand all the key elements necessary to build in to the initiative, agreeing on an approach to the level of scale appropriate and details desired, including options to cultivate various strains. The Consultant will be asked to submit a projected budget, breaking down the costs for Consultant’s services as well as the various start-up and operational costs mentioned (assuming cultivation of at least 3 strains, including at least one custom strain), as part of this proposal process.
(2) Interpretive Information. The Consultant will provide summary information and a list of further resources about cannabis, its cultivation, and the natural and cultural significance (with a Caribbean regional focus and where possible a local focus) of cannabis and of the strains
available in this initiative. This foundation of information will help the Ministry of Tourism team build educational and storytelling components to share with visitors during tours and experiences, via such channels as interpretive signage and guided tours.
The information expected to be provided and/or resources identified for further consultation, should cover aspects including:
∙ overview details of how cannabis is grown, and the approach to cultivating cannabis in this initiative
∙ sustainability information about the cannabis cultivation operation, including attempts to minimize plastic use and conserve resources including any renewable energy efforts employed
∙ contributions the cannabis initiative is providing to benefit the local economy, including local sourcing of materials, local employment, other local partnerships, etc.
∙ information about the natural significance of cannabis, including the role cannabis may play in the natural ecosystem, and
∙ information about the history and cultural significance of cannabis, with a special focus on the Caribbean, and any details possible relating to the Eastern Caribbean and St. Kitts and Nevis, including an overview of traditional and medicinal uses.
(3) Cannabis Products. The Consultant will provide assistance planning, setting up, and beginning to manufacture an array of cannabis products to be sold at retail. The Consultant will advise on which products to produce, and a model for manufacturing and retail sales that fits Ministry of Tourism priorities and makes business sense for the designated site in this project, as well as
retail pricing for such products. The Consultant will generate a basic business plan including costs and projected revenue for product manufacturing and sales. Additionally, the Consultant will assist with the start of production to ensure successful deployment of the manufacturing and retail sales operation. The preliminary aim is for the designated site involved in this project to sell some cannabis products in a gift shop and through partnerships with other retail channels on St. Kitts and Nevis, as well as use some products in visitor experiences (e.g., cannabis oils in massage treatments). Consultant should advise on additional opportunities based on its expertise.
(4) Public Sensitization. Throughout the project, the Consultant will provide media interviews and participate in a public awareness campaign. Objectives will include educating residents of St. Kitts and Nevis about various aspects of cannabis and this cannabis cultivation initiative, as well as raising awareness regionally and internationally about the initiative, its wide-ranging benefits, and contributions to an exciting new agriculture and tourism component in St. Kitts.
3. REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS (RFP)
To be considered for this opportunity, tenderer will be expected to submit:
∙ an email notifying the Government of your intent to submit a proposal (LOI), in advance of proposal submission.
∙ a project proposal outlining the methodology for providing the services outlined in this RFP, including specifying the proposed timing of Consultant’s completion of the project and milestones along the way. With the proposal, describe the internal and external metrics tenderer will use to measure project success. (0-5 Points Awarded)
∙ a project budget outlining all project costs, including all equipment and inputs needed to execute the work described in this scope. Additionally, the tenderer should specify the projected / typical annual maintenance cost of the cannabis growing operation following Consultant’s exit from the project. Tenderer should specify any assumptions factoring into the budget proposed. (0-5 Points Awarded)
∙ an overview of tenderer’s experience, including the following information: o the full legal name of the tenderer and any trade name;
o the name, address and, if applicable, form of business entity of all related business organizations that will have a significant role in managing, directing, operating, or otherwise carrying out the services to be provided if selected as Consultant. Describe in detail how these relationships will work formally and in practice.
o resume and bio of individuals who will play a key role in the project and specification of the role each will play.
o the length of tenderer’s existence as a business entity.
o describe the tenderer’s experience in employing different methods of cannabis cultivation in various environments and contexts.
o describe the tenderer’s experience in cannabis genetics and creating custom cannabis strains.
o describe the tenderer’s experience in soil-, nutrient-, and other testing necessary to the health and vitality of the plants.
o describe the tenderer’s experience in organic and non-toxic, sustainable production of cannabis.
o describe the tenderer’s experience providing services similar to those required by this RFP, by providing at least two examples of related experience, and an explanation of how you will apply that experience directly to the operations in St. Kitts. For each example, specify:
▪ name and location of operation;
▪ nature and tenure of the tenderer’s involvement, including the roles and responsibilities of tenderer, and any other partners involved;
▪ status of the operation (e.g., currently owned and operating; sold; open but no longer operated by tenderer; closed; etc.);
▪ description of tenderer’s involvement / services provided, and volumes of cannabis grown, cannabis products manufactured, customers served, etc.;
▪ key customer markets served and any connection to tourism;
▪ financial health data for the operation;
▪ any sustainability practices employed (e.g., environmental management, as well as elements of cultural protection and promotion; maximization of
training, employment, and sourcing opportunities for local people and
businesses; contributions of the enterprise to development and benefits to
the surrounding community, etc.);
▪ any other pertinent details.
o any other pertinent details. (0-5 Points Awarded)
Lastly, as an unscored component of the proposal: The Government is aware that any business may receive the occasional notice of violation, penalty, fine, less than satisfactory public health rating, or similar regulatory notice from a federal, state, or local agency (Infractions). The Government is interested in understanding how your business manages these Infractions and your overall strategy to minimize Infractions.
∙ Describe all Infractions that have occurred in your business operations in the past five years. ∙ Explain how you responded to each Infraction, including actions you took to prevent a recurrence of the Infraction.
∙ Describe your overall strategy to minimize Infractions and how you resolve Infractions when they do occur.
Tenderer should be prepared for an interview with the St. Kitts Ministries of Tourism and Agriculture as a step in the selection process.
Please submit email indicating intent to submit a proposal (LOI), and the proposal, to:
Ms. Tivanna Wharton
Permanent Secretary for the Ministry of Tourism
The LOI should be received by July 19, 2023, at 5pm EST. The proposal should be received by August 9, 2023, at 5pm EST.