Mamma Sassy’s Papaya Medley Pepper Sauce is spicing up Royal Caribbean International’s private island destination Perfect Day at CocoCay, The Bahamas. The award-winning sauce created by small business owner and Bahamian Cherelle Cartwright makes its debut on the island in the popular Captain Jack’s restaurant.
From the bustling street markets of Nassau to the private destination in the Bahamas, Bahamian Cherelle Cartwright’s sauce debuted on the island just a few months after scaling the small business for mass production through the Access Accelerator Small Business Development Centre Grant Program funded by the cruise line.
Cartwright’s journey from home chef to budding business owner propelled her to new heights after winning a pepper sauce competition open to small businesses in the Bahamas in October 2021 and receiving funds to expand her business through the program. “I could never have done this without the continuous support of the team from Royal Caribbean,” said Cartwright. “It was a journey and they were with me every step of the way. I can’t say enough good things about them, how they cared and the constant attention, calling to see how I was doing, encouraging me, encouraging my product, they were behind me 110%. When the lumps and bumps came up, they were there for me, they were wonderful.”
Royal Caribbean International and The Access Accelerator Small Business Development Centre combined resources to launch the Royal Caribbean Programme in July 2021, which administers US$500,000 in funding and training opportunities to support small businesses in the tourism sector on New Providence, Grand Bahama and the Berry Islands. The company provided an initial contribution of US$250,000, equally matched by the Access Accelerator. The cruise line invested an additional US$250,000 in 2022 to help incubate small businesses and bring additional jobs to the community. The program provided Cartwright with access to a business manager who assisted her in scaling up production to meet the demands of a mass market. The funds she received enabled her to test five products in an FDA-approved lab for nutritional data.
“Our guests seek authentic experiences when traveling and this initiative has allowed us to continue to deliver those experiences while uplifting the communities that share their culture with us,” said Russell Benford, vice president of government relations for Royal Caribbean Group. “Cartwright’s success with Mama Sassy’s Pepper Sauce exemplifies how the determination of an ambitious small business owner attributed by the opportunity presented by the Royal Caribbean Programme can change lives. We are excited about this new partnership with Mama Sassy’s and look forward to supporting other small businesses to achieve their goals.”
Captain Jack’s is touted as the best place to spend time like a local while enjoying live music, salty sea breezes and amazing food and drinks at Perfect Day at CocoCay. Mama Sassy’s Papaya Medley Pepper Sauce joins an assortment of signature sauces on the la carte menu complimenting a crowd favorite, the crispy golden chicken wings.