Renovated and upgraded Public Market and Abattoir among highlighted

Basseterre, St. Kitts (CUOPM) — Acting Director of Agriculture, Mr. Thomas Jackson has been highlighting the achievements of the Ministry of Agriculture in general and the Department of Agriculture in particular.

Besides highlighting the 15 percent increase in food crop production, the senior agricultural officer listed the FAO World Food Day week of activities including the Farmers and Fishers Annual Prize Giving Ceremony, the Eat Local Day and completion of a Packing House on the grounds of the Department of Agriculture.

Also highlighted were the introduction of new variety of watermelon (Bonta), completion of FAO US $20,000.00 Telefood Projects for six primary schools, importation of 40 Duroc pigs and 40 Yorkshire pigs as a result of an SIDF project aimed at upgrading local stock, collaboration with the Agriculture Resource Management Project (ARMP) in the establishment of shade houses and dams and establishment of a storage shed to be utilized by farmers at the Tabernacle Out Reach Centre (TOC).

Mr. Jackson also listed the continuing renovation of the Basseterre Public Market with new equipment including a freezer, generator, chill room for vegetables, meat cutter for the renovated meat room being installed and the upgrading of the Basseterre Abattoir which include the installation of a reefer, freezers, a lunch room and new office space.

The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAC) US$170,000-financed TCP project with the commercialisation of breadfruit and breadnut value for improved employment and food security.

During the period under review, the FAO Telefood Project valuing US $20,000.00 was completed in the Bronte Welsh, Tyrell-Williams, Sandy Point, St. Pauls, Saddlers and Edgar. T. Morris Primary schools.

“As a result of the project, the schools received irrigation equipment, tools, land preparation service, seeds and seedlings, fertilizer and field supplies in the form of plastic mulch, hanging scales and bags. From the sale of the outputs from the garden the six schools were able to earn $11,206.00. It is expected that this revenue would be utilized by the schools so as to sustain future production,” said Mr. Jackson.

During the last quarter of 2013, an FAO TCP project, “The Commercialisation of Breadfruit and Breadnut Value for Improved Employment and Food Security” valuing US$170,000.00 was implemented as one of the priorities for the St. Kitts and Nevis in the Country Programming Framework for FAO’s support during period 2012–2015.

“The project outcome will be achieved through activities implemented under four components, namely institutional strengthening of Department of Agriculture, improved orchard management, and productivity of breadfruit, processing and marketing,” said the Acting Permanent Secretary.

He said activities reviewed under the programme include the establishment and equipping of the Project Office, the formation of the 8-member National Project Steering Committee, and the establishment of the National Value Chain Coordination Committee.

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