Minister of Agriculture, Indar Weir (second right) and FAO National Programme Consultant, Stephen Alleyne (right) greet members of charitable organizations which received a variety of produce to mark World Food Day. The members (l – r) are: Jerome Gittens (Street Lamp Ministries); Kimberley Hinds-Harewood (Barbados Alliance to End Homelessness) and Acting Director of the Child Care Board, Colin St. Hill (centre). (C. Pitt/BGIS)

Two charities and a government agency were today presented with a variety of produce as part of the activities by the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security and the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) to mark World Food Day – October 16.

Speaking to the joint action, Agriculture Minister Indar Weir alluded to the significance of World Food Day, in keeping with the FAO’s “efforts to provide awareness and eradicate world hunger in accordance with Sustainable Development Goal #2”, which is to end hunger, achieve food security, improve nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture by 2030.

While expressing pleasure at the gesture and the involvement of the FAO, the Minister told those gathered at the Ministry in Graeme Hall, Christ Church, that it was an “expression of what is arguably humanity’s most genuine expression of benevolence – the act of giving to those who are less fortunate”.

The three entities receiving the donations were: The Barbados Alliance to End Homelessness; Street Lamp Ministries, and the Child Care Board.

He added: “We, at the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security, consider the sharing of produce and planting material with the public, including institutions such as schools, churches, NGOs and individuals, as being vital to our mandate to advance interest in agriculture and to promote national food and nutrition security.

As he acknowledged that it did not stop there, he revealed that the Ministry was also active in lending technical assistance, through its extension services, to numerous causes and was committed to this important initiative, as it strove “to become more proactive to our sector’s needs”.

The theme selected for World Food Day 2021 is Our actions are our future – Better production, better nutrition, a better environment and a better life.

Addressing its significance, the Agriculture Minister said: “It is well timed, as more than ever, we see the need to work together for the survival of present and future generations. Our current global battle against the dreaded COVID-19 virus, the La Soufrière Volcano eruption, and the passage of Hurricane Elsa have all, through their disruption of our lives, forced a close examination of the complexity of the agri-food systems.”

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