The local agricultural sector will come under the microscope tomorrow, Wednesday, May 30, when the Ministry of Agriculture, Food, Fisheries and Water Resource Management holds a National Consultation at the Savannah Hotel.

Commencing at 9:00 a.m., the meeting will be an opportunity for the Ministry to engage stakeholders on ways to move the sector forward and assist in the development of a White Paper on Agriculture.

The preparation of the White Paper is but the first step in a process that will lead to the transformation and the repositioning of the local agricultural sector.

Policy areas which the White Paper will focus on are: land use; praedial larceny; food and nutrition security; food imports; investment; promotion of inter-sector linkages between the food and the agricultural sector, and other areas such as tourism, manufacturing and energy; capacity building and the development of appropriate human resources; the development of a sugar cane industry; incentives and technical and financial support; and the role of other national, regional and international agencies in support of agriculture.

Tomorrow’s consultation will be followed by a series of town hall meetings throughout the island, where members of the public will have an opportunity to share their views on agriculture.

The first will take place on Monday, June 4, at the Alexandra School, Speightstown, St. Peter, starting at 7:00 p.m.; the second on Sunday, June 10, at the Princess Margaret School, Six Roads, St. Philip, at 5:00 p.m.; while the third will be on the following day, Monday, June 11, at the Valley Resource Centre, The Valley, St. George, at 7:00 p.m.

It is expected that the White Paper on Agriculture will be available in early July.


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