Department of Agriculture will play pivotal role in upcoming 2019 National Best Village Competition

Basseterre, St. Kitts, May 16, 2019 (SKNIS): The Department of Agriculture will play a pivotal role in the upcoming 2019 Best Village Competition, which is aimed at the beautification and preservation of communities and the promotion community togetherness, says Novelette Morton, Senior Tourism Projects Officer at the Ministry of Tourism, during her appearance on “Working for You” on May 12.

Ms. Morton noted that the department has an incredible amount of expertise surrounding the crops and as such will play an essential role with respect to judging the competition especially the best home garden subcategory, which will be divided into two parts namely, vegetable and ornamental.

“Because they deal with crops, they play a pivotal role. For example, with respect to the judging criteria, it is for that reason we ask Mr. Stuart Versailles to chair that committee because they know things about plant health … sanitation … and sustainability,” she said.

The competition falls directly in line with the vision of the government of St. Kitts and Nevis to tap into Agro-tourism. Minister of Tourism, Honourable Lindsay Grant, on September 22, 2016, spoke about the St. Kitts Eco-park, also known as the Agro-Tourism Demonstration Farm Co-Op, as a perfect example of agriculture and tourism being integrated in a sustainable manner.

“Agritourism provides a variety of benefits,” said the Minister. “These include the opportunity to educate the visitors and the public about agriculture, to share agriculture heritage and rural lifestyle with visitors, to enhance the tourism appeal of the rural areas, to preserve our rural heritage and traditions, to provide job opportunities and to provide scenic beauty and landscapes. …the St. Kitts Eco-Park provides all that and much more.”

The park was officially handed over to the Government of St. Kitts and Nevis from the Government of the Republic of China (Taiwan) on Thursday, January 24, 2019, after eight years of operation.

The launch for the 2019 National Best Village Competition will take place at Independence Square on Friday, May 17, 2019. Registration takes place during the entire month of May 2019. The final judging of the competition will take place in November 2019 during Tourism Awareness Month. Preliminary judging will take place in July and September.

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