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Jamaica’s government prioritizes strengthening food security

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The Jamaican government is taking decisive steps to prioritize food security, as articulated by the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Mining, Hon. Floyd Green. 

During a recent agricultural show hosted by the Rural Agricultural Development Authority (RADA) in Santa Cruz, St. Elizabeth, Minister Green emphasized the government’s commitment to bolstering local agriculture through substantial financial investments.

Boosting key crop production

In an effort to enhance domestic crop yields, the government has allocated significant funding toward increasing the production of Irish potatoes and supporting onion farmers. 

These efforts are part of a broader strategy to enhance the output of crops that are vital to the livelihoods of over 70,000 farmers and indirectly support over 350,000 Jamaicans employed in related sectors.

Infrastructure enhancements for agricultural efficiency

Recognizing the critical role of infrastructure in agricultural productivity, the government plans to invest $91 million in improving farm roads within St. Elizabeth, renowned as Jamaica’s “food basket parish.” 

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This investment targets nine specific areas for development, aiming to facilitate better transportation and access for farmers, thus improving the efficiency and productivity of the agricultural sector in the region.

Overcoming challenges with resilience

Despite facing challenges such as drought and other adversities, Jamaican farmers have demonstrated remarkable resilience. 

This resilience has led to a resurgence in onion production, highlighting the strength and potential of the agricultural sector. 

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Minister Green remains optimistic about the health of local agriculture, expressing confidence in its current state and future prospects.

Encouraging youth participation in agriculture

In a move to secure the future of agriculture, the government is providing significant incentives to encourage youth participation in the sector. 

This initiative acknowledges the essential role of young people in maintaining the vitality and sustainability of agriculture.

A commitment to agricultural development

The government’s ongoing commitment to the agricultural sector is clear, with concerted efforts to support and enhance agriculture as a cornerstone of Jamaica’s economy. 

The financial focus on key crops like Irish potatoes and onions not only underscores a proactive approach to food security but also supports the economic stability and growth of the farming community.

Vision for a sustainable agricultural future

With a clear focus on supporting farmers, enhancing crop yields, and promoting agricultural sustainability, the government’s initiatives are set to positively impact the livelihoods of farmers and the overall landscape of agriculture in Jamaica. 

The strategic emphasis on specific crops aims to ensure food security and sustainable agricultural practices, addressing both current challenges and future opportunities within the sector.

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