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Karl Samuda says

Dont give up on the sugar


By MICAF Communications Office couraged local pro- Currently only 3,500 hectares are
inister of Industry, Com- ducers to expand pro- available. The Minister reported that some Minister Samuda thanked the Euro-
merce, Agriculture and Fish- duction to supply both 18,000 hectares of leased lands have pean Union for its contribution
eries, Karl Samuda, is encouraging the local and CARI- been returned by the Chinese to over the past 10 years
stakeholders in the sugar industry to COM markets. the Government of Jamaica through the Sugar Trans-
have a positive outlook on the sector Turning to the matter of and there were formation Programme. In
and to move forward with the confi- increased production now several addition, in the face of
dence that this industry will rise and productivity, opportunities the impact of climate
again. Minister Samuda for investors to change, he identified
Minister Samuda, who was speak- outlined a number get involved in the continued improve-
ing at the 80th annual conference of the of steps to increase use of these lands, ment in infrastruc-
Jamaica Association of Sugar Technol- efficiency in the field. not just for sugar but ture, irrigation,
ogists (JAST) November 2 in Ocho Rios, He said, for example, for diversification into agronomic practices as well
said there was an enormous reservoir of some 7,500 hectares of the cultivation of other as increased investments as
potential in the sugar cane industry. cane was required to make crops such as onion, he being essential to the fu-
The agriculture minister said that in production at said. ture viability of the indus-
comparison to the US$370 per tonne paid the try.
for raw sugar in the European market,
value-added sugar products could fetch
prices as high as US$2,000 per tonne for Minister of Industry, Com-
merce, Agriculture and
the commodity.
Fisheries, Karl Samuda
Against the background of the end of displays samples of locally
the special quota arrangement to the Euro- branded sugar at the Ja-
pean market for sugar from the African maica Association of Sugar
Caribbean and Pacific countries effective Monymusk
Technologists Conference held on No-
October 1, this year, Minister Samuda en- factory in Clarendon vember 2 in Ocho Rios.

Cane Farmers Association
profit jumps to $11.54 M ... page 5
Jamaicas domestic crop
production on the decline ... page 7

Cleanup JACRA act, before

implementation .... page 9

Diandra Rowe wins EU and Gates foundation

Prime Minister's Youth Award pledge 500 M for
See page 12 innovations in agri ... page 15

Dr. Michael Motta on being awarded Veterinarian of the Year!

Hi-Pro extends hearty congratulations to our very own Dr. Motta for being awarded
2016 Veterinarian of the Year by the Jamaica Veterinary Medical Association. Dr. Motta is an expert in Cattle
Fertility and pioneer of Embryo Transfer Technology, an invaluable mentor to veterinary students and completely
dedicated to his vocation of helping and healing animals for 19 Years and counting.

We thank you for your invaluable service to Hi-Pro

and Jamaicas agricultural sector!

Agriculture needs more energy and excitement

T he new year is approaching and should
bring joy and hope for a new beginning
and much optimism in the sector.
Another disturbing development is the
increasing food import cost, which has been
averaging over US$906 million over the
Agricultural modernization and improved
production efficiency are some critical pre-
scriptions for tackling the challenges of the
The Ministry that is hosting the agri-
culture and fisheries portfolios is over-
loaded and pressured with a numerous of
However, if the negative trends and the past six years, while agricultural ex- farming sector, which is vital to regulations and other bureaucratic red tape.
lackluster performances continue in the port is struggling at US$216 unlock economic growth po- Five years after the late Minister of Agri-
agriculture, 2018 will be another challeng- million. tential. culture, Roger Clarke, announced the
ing year for farmers. However, all is not lost. Overall, we need more merger of the four agricultural entities
The nations overall domestic crop pro- We have a healthy pool of energy and excitements in the coconut, coffee and cocoa boards and
duction output has been lackluster this year resourceful people in both agriculture to keep the the ministrys export division into a sin-
and could continue to face more poor per- the public and private sec- sleeping king awake. gle agency, the process is yet to be com-
formance in 2018 because of unstable tors who are eager to see the MICAF is now more reac- pleted.
weather conditions and significant con- re-emergence of a thriving tive than proactive. Not Production outputs of these commodities
straints affecting production. agricultural industry. Also, a many new and creative proj- continue to decline as farmers are aban-
Jamaicas food security measure, includ- new breed of savvy entrepre- ects and programmes are being doning their fields.
ing the governments Vision 2030 Na- neurs, including members of the rolled out. Food importers are raking in millions
tional Development Plan, could be Diaspora, is seeking invest- While there may be other critical because imported coffee, cocoa, meat, and
derailed as the island is losing 9,722 ment opportunities in agricul- issues affecting the operations at the milk are outperforming local production.
hectares of farmland each year, including ture and renewable energy. ministry, we agree with farmers and The year 2018 is expected to be another
some 379,140 hectares or 63 percent, that But, some strategic inter- other stakeholders who are com- challenging period for farmers. However,
have disappeared over the past 48 years. ventions are needed to fix plaining agriculture is not doing with more cohesive leadership at the Agri-
If the trend continues, Jamaica in 2030 agriculture. well under the merged MICAF. culture Ministry and better consultation
would have lost a further 126,386 hectares, The Ministry of Industry, With 28 departments and agencies in with farmers and stakeholders, we could
or almost 44 percent of its farmlands. This Commerce, Agriculture & Fish- the super MICAF, it is virtually impossible achieve success.
includes prime agricultural lands, which are eries (MICAF) needs to put in for one Minister and a Permanent Secre-
essential to the efficient production of live- place strategies to fast-track the tary to carry out their responsibilities as
stock and crop production to satisfy both modernization of agriculture to outlined by Jamaican laws efficiently. Patrick Maitland
the domestic and export markets. enhance food security, improve rural liveli- Publisher - The Agriculturalist
hoods and create wealth for the people.

A massive expansion of the coconut industry!

The opinions expressed in this newspaper, except for the above, do not necessarily reflect the views of The Agriculturalist and its publishers. Please send your com-
ments or suggestions to Responses should be no longer than 400 words. Not all articles will be published.

T he Coconut Industry Board (CIB) has

put forward a comprehensive strategic
business and capital expenditure plan to
growth and overall contribution to national
In fact, this business plan for the dra-
The Board is also seeking to develop a
sustainable commercial business model by
establishing its own coconut farm inter-
the Government of Jamaica, through the matic increase in the size of the Coconut cropped with cocoa and to seek private
Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agricul- industry in Jamaica is partially inspired by joint venture partners for the establishment
ture and Fisheries (MICAF) seeking its the European Union Caribbean Coconut and operation of a packaging facility for
support for the expansion of the local co- Competitiveness Improvement project, coconut water and a processing plant for
conut industry. which is being executed by CARDI and virgin coconut oil.
The CIBs plan has targeted the plant- the International Trade Center in Brussels. The CIB has stated that it has made a
ing of approximately 150,000 acres of co- Jamaica, through the CIB, is currently strong value proposition of a sustainable
conuts over the next ten years, up from the leading the charge in the Caribbean on re- coconut industry with the primary pillar
current 40,000 acres. By engaging some search to fight against pathogens, namely being an anticipated substantial positive
2,000 new small farmers, medium size phytoplasma and bacteria, affecting tropi- impact on national economic growth.
growers and local and overseas investors cal and subtropical crops in the European- We are optimistic that our compre-
through our investment drive programme. funded TROPICSAFE initiative. hensive business plan will get the approval
The CIB is proposing the develop- According to data from the Statistical from policymakers and look forward to
ment of a private sector joint venture ini- Institute of Jamaica, during 2015 approxi- working closely with the Government and
tiative to develop several factories for mately $1.3billion (US$11.4million) of co- other stakeholders to take the coconut in-
coconut water, and sports drink production conuts and coconut by-products were dustry to the next level.
facilities, virgin coconut oil production fa- imported to satisfy local demand.
BY ChRIStoPhER GENtlES The CIB notes that the provision of a
cilities as well as cocoa fermentaries for Chairman of the CIB
the export of cocoa. consistent supply of quality raw materials
The current plans call for an invest- such as seedlings for planting and coconuts
caused a significant shift in the need for co- for processing, as well as the development
ment of J$3.0 billion over ten years, with
conut products. of several coconut varieties will help to de-
an anticipated internal rate of return of
Today, particularly with a vertically crease import costs.
29.1%. It is estimated that this plan could
integrated value-added component such as The Board currently manages two
Publisher & Editor:
generate thousands of stable long term jobs Patrick Maitland
the export of coconut water and the pro- seed gardens and four nurseries with a total
within the agricultural sector. The program
duction of virgin coconut oil, growing co- production capacity of 400,000 seedlings
is however subject to the approval of the Consulting Editors:
conuts has become profitable. each year and also provides a market for
coconut growers at an extraordinary meet- Vincent Wright, Jairzenho Bailey
The local coconut industry is poised coconuts produced by small farmers. The
for significant growth as the CIB is also in- plan is for a resuscitation and expansion of
Produced & Published by:
The strategic focus of the CIB is to po-
creasing its nursery capacity and gaining its coconut seed gardens and nursery facil-
sition Jamaica as the leader in coconut Agri life Foundation ltd
global recognition. Due to our extensive ities intending to adequately supply
seedlings, coconut production and value- AMC Complex,
research and technical competence in dis- seedlings to Jamaican farmers, entrepre-
added coconut products in the Caribbean. 188 Spanish Town Road,
ease control, we have also been asked to neurs, and potential investors. We are also Kingston 11, Jamaica, W.I.
We are at an exciting juncture. Growing
play a leadership role within the region on aiming to provide the Caribbean region Tel: (876) 923-7471 923-7428
coconuts 25 years ago was a very marginal
several projects. We are building our rep- and possibly the Asia-Pacific region with
exercise. The massive increase in demand
utation as an authority on the development planting material as part of our expansion
for coconut water sports drink, coconut oil
of coconuts and its potential business programme.
based medicines, and beauty products has

in tourism for
local Farmers
M inister without Portfolio in the Min-
istry of Industry, Commerce, Agricul-
ture and Fisheries, J.C. Hutchinson, says the
tourism sector continues to offer opportuni-
ties to local farmers.
Speaking at the Human Employment
and Resource Training (HEART) College of
Hospitality Services/Western Hospitality In-
stitute Trade Show at the Cardiff Hotel and
Spa, Runaway Bay, St. Ann, on November
16, Hutchinson said that a close examination
of the countrys high food-import bill reveals
that a large portion of what is imported is
destined for the tourism sector.
Based on a 2015 Demand Study, it is


estimated that the annual value of demand
for agricultural products by the tourism sec-
tor is approximately $19 billion, the Minis- Member of Parliament for St. Andrew East Rural and wife Prime Minister Andrew Holness Juliet Holness (5th
ter noted. l) greets Newport-Fersan (Jamaica) Ltds managing director, Dennis Valdez (4th l), during a tour of the facili-
More than 75 per cent of this value is
for food items in the poultry, meat, seafood
ties on November 24 at Newport West, Kingston. Also in the photo (l-r) Joan Sharpe Colley, Marketing Coor-
and fruit categories, of which locally dinator, Newport-Fersan; Hector Ramirez, Plan Manager, Newport-Fersan; Charmaine Mendez Blackford,
sourced agricultural produce accounted for Technical Manager, Newport-Fersan; Hedda Rose-Pitter, Business Development Manager, Newport-Fersan
only $14.5 billion, he added. Marketing Manager and Lloyd Benjamin, Chairman RADA St. Andrew Advisory Board.

Praedial larceny Unit Invites Entries

for Essay and Poster Competitions
T he Praedial Larceny Prevention Unit
(PLPU) in the Ministry of Industry,
Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries is now
The Praedial Larceny Prevention Unit
(PLPU) in the Ministry of Industry, Com-
merce, Agriculture and Fisheries is now ac-
accepting entries for its National Poster and cepting entries for its National Poster and
Essay Competitions. Essay Competitions.
Praedial Larceny Prevention Coordina- The competitions, which are targeted at
tor, Trudy-Ann Edwards, said that the com- students, will provide the opportunity for
petitions form part of the Ministrys public them to become more aware of the impact
education campaign aimed at sensitising Ja- of praedial larceny and to propose solutions
maicans about the negative extent, nature to combat the theft of agricultural produce
and magnitude of praedial larceny. in their respective parishes.
What measures should be taken to com- Primary-school students aged 9 to 12
bat the theft of agricultural produce in Ja- are invited to submit entries for the poster
maica? Miss Edwards said the essay must be competition while the essay component is
an original work written in Standard Eng- open to 13- to 18-year-old students who are
lish, and applicants are asked to submit the attending secondary school or are members
essay along with a completed application of the Jamaica 4-H Clubs.
form and passport-size photograph.

J$347 million in losses in agricultural

sector during october/November rains
T he Ministry of Agriculture is reporting
that the heavy rains in October and No-
vember resulted in J$347 million in losses
According to Hutchinson, Clarendon,
St Catherine and St Ann were among the
to the agricultural sector. hardest hit parishes.
This is based on an assessment by the He also said consumers should expect a
Rural Agricultural Development Authority. shortage of some agricultural produce due
Minister without Portfolio in the Min- to the rain.
istry of Agriculture, J.C Hutchinson, said He however noted that prices have de-
more than 3,600 farmers lost nearly 900 creased for some crops such as ginger and
hectares of crops and 151 farmers lost 6,700 pineapple.

Book your advert in...



The Agriculturalist
Jamaica 4-H Club National Leader of the year awardee, Carlene Gab-
bidon holds her plaque while (l-r) Dwain Moodie, parish manager, Man-
chester 4H Club; Sharon Thompson-Jordan, president, 4-H Club Leaders
Call 923-7471 Association and Natalee Salomon, club leader join the celebration.

Cane Farmers Association

profit jumps to $11.54 million
CASE lecturer
Donovan hill died
By Kimmy Blair contain the cost of opera-

Reporter - The Agriculturalist tions while we developed
new income streams. The enior lecturer in economics and entre-
he All-Island Jamaica Cane Farmers initiatives realized for the preneurship at the College of Agricul-
Association (AIJCF) has recorded association a reduction in ture, Science and Education (CASE)
over 100% improvement in its financial the level of liabilities and Donovan "Panel" Hill, 54 died on
performance with net profit as of Septem- a cessation of gratuities Wednesday (December 6) after succumb-
ber 30, 2017, stood at $11.54 million, com- payable on contracts. ing to a massive heart attack in the Port
Nigel Myrie The secretary/manager
pared to net loss of $9.88 million during Antonio Hospital where he was admitted
the corresponding period of 2016. also explains that the early that day.
The financial report of the AIJCF for AIJCF
changes coupled with the Donovan had an unrelenting ambi-
the period ending September 30, 2017, at- improvement in the fertil- tion to be successful and to support his
tributed the performance to a substantial izer and chemical advance family and help people. He was a brilliant
gross profit of $8.23 million from the sales programmes have repositioned the finan- scholar and businessman who will be
of fertilizer, chemicals and other agricul- cial outlook of the association as a going missed by his students and thousands of
tural supplies, management fee of $60 mil- concern. customers in the island, Robert Mon-
lion from the Sugar Industry Authority and The number of farmers supplying cane tague, Minister of National Security and a
$24.02 million in levy from cane farmers increased slightly from 3,123 in 2016 to former college mate at CASE.
which push the associations income to 3,178 55 farmers or 2% more than 2016 Donovan is one of the most hard- Donovan "Panel" hill
$94.34 million compared to $84.63 million but 25% less than 2015. working, dedicated and committed peo- December 6, 2017 - March 29, 1963
in 2016. The All-Island Jamaica Cane Farmers' ple I have known. He was a devoted
Secretary/manager at AIJCF, Nigel Association was founded in 1941 to pro- family man who was always looking out Four children, five siblings, and his
Myrie notes that the operating expenses mote foster and encourage the growing of for people, Richard Campbell, his long- parents survive him.
were contained at $90.40 million or $6.24 cane by farmers and the orderly and proper time friend and colleague at CASE re- A service of thanksgiving will be
million below corresponding period. Myrie delivery thereof to factories and extension called. held at the TP Lecky Theater, CASE,
says, the Association had to make some and welfare of cane farmers as an island in- Hill who also operated a computer Passley Garden, Portland on January 21,

Clarke urges increased

major fiscal and structural adjustments to dustry. technology school, a juice bar and a 2018.
restaurant has been a lecturer at CASE for Interment will follow in Ensfield at
the past twenty years. the family plot.

investment in agriculture
A mbassador Plenipotentiary for Eco-
nomic Affairs, Dr. Nigel Clarke, is
calling for increased investment in agri-
culture, as there is great demand that is not
being satisfied and which the nation has
the ability to supply.
If we focus more on growing our
own produce, we would reduce the need to
import and satisfy the demands of our mar-
kets, which also results in an increase in
our gross domestic product (GDP), he ar-
He was speaking at the Jamaica Em-
ployers Federations (JEF) third annual
CEO Breakfast held on Tuesday (Novem-
ber 7) at The Knutsford Court Hotel in Dr. Nigel Clarke, Ambassador
New Kingston. Plenipotentiary for Economic Affairs
Dr. Clarke said that while there may
be concerns about the impacts of climate He said the data show that whenever
change and natural disasters, new tech- agriculture does well, Jamaica does well
nologies are available to protect crops. and when agriculture suffers, as was the
Its 2017, and with the application of case in the last quarter Jamaica suffers.
technology and proper infrastructure, So we need to have a strategic approach to
theres no need to be so much at the mercy agriculture and double up our efforts in
of droughts and floods as we are today. that area.
What we need to do, and what we will be We tend to underestimate how im-
certainly advocating for, is an acceleration portant agriculture is to Jamaica. Were
of investments in water infrastructure, stor- very much still an agricultural society
age systems, distribution systems and irri- where agriculture plays a fundamental role
gation, because the data suggest that in the daily lives of Jamaicans, and if we
wherever agriculture goes, thats where Ja- are to ensure that we can pick up and sus-
maica goes, he noted. tain going forward, were going to have to
Dr. Clarke said that agriculture has pay serious attention to agriculture, he
proven to be influential to the Jamaican noted further.
market and earnings, and is a key compo- Meanwhile, Dr. Clarke said the Ja-
nent in the performance of the nation in maica economy is moving in the right di-
each quarter. rection.

Jamaicas domestic crop production on the decline

By Patrick Maitland The Jamaica Metrological Office is re-

Editor-The Agriculturalist porting above normal rainfall since the be-
ginning of 2017, which resulted in
amaicas overall domestic crop produc- significant flooding in some of the leading
tion output has been lackluster this year producing communities. Persistent rain is
and could face more poor performance in also forecasted for the final quarter of the
2018, due to unstable weather conditions year, which would affect production out-
as well as significant constraints affecting put negatively.
production. The Ministry also identified the fol-
According to data compiled by the lowing as among the major constraints to
Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agricul- production during the quarters under re-
ture & Fisheries, the first three-quarters of viewed: High incidences of losses to prae-
2017 recorded declines of 4.6%, 11.0% dial larceny; high cost of labour and tractor
and 2.8% in the respective periods. services; flooding; high cost of seedlings
The first quarter production amounted and other planting materials; high cost of
to 168,844.7 t, a marginal decline of 4.6% inputs, fertilizers and chemicals; lack of ir-
when compared to the output in the com- sponding period of 2016, when some rienced during the year, damaging estab- rigation and water storage facilities; lack
parable quarter of 2016 when approxi- 177,825.1 t had been reaped. lished crops in some of the major produc- of proper storage and drying facilities for
mately 176,969.6 t was reaped. The 3rd quarter produced 152157.7 t, ing areas, further resulting in severe losses seeds and other planting materials and lack
The declining trends continue in the a declined of 2.8% when compared with to farmers across the island, as cash crops of proper access to farms, and highly dete-
2nd quarter with 157,745.7 t, decreasing 15,6611.9 t were produced in 2016. were washed out and fields were flooded riorated farm roads.

Poultry industry launches public education

by 11.0 % when compared to the corre- The Ministry observed that production during the periods of excessive rainfall.
had been affected by the heavy rains expe-

Campaign on benefits of sector to Jamaican economy

T he Jamaica Broilers Group
will be launching a national
public education campaign to
focus on the significant contri-
bution being made by the local
poultry industry to the economy.

Prolong merger
The announcement was
made by Conley Salmon, Presi-

of JACRA affects
dent Jamaica Operations, Ja-
maica Broilers Group at the Best

coffee farmers
Dressed Chicken Farmers
Awards luncheon held on Mon-
day, December 4 at the Terra
offee farmers said the prolonged Nova Hotel.
delay in completing the merger of In commending members
the coconut, coffee and cocoa boards of the poultry industry for their
and the ministrys export division into professionalism and hard work,
the Jamaica Agricultural Commodities Mr. Salmon said the time had
Regulatory Authority (JACRA) is nega- come for the wider public to bet-
tively affecting production. ter understand the industrys im-
Some five years ago the government pact on employment provided
enacted JACRA, but after missing sev- by the 60-thousand contract
eral implementations and startup dates, farmers, over 2-thousand large
Donald Salmon president Jamaica Cof- ones, as well as an increasing
fee Growers Association (JCGA) said the group of backyard growers. Christopher levy (right), President of CEo of Jamaica Broilers Group gets ready to pres-
regulations keep changing, and it is very We are preparing a book- ent the Best Dressed Chicken trophy to Alexander Grant (left) as top Producer with less
worrying to farmers. let which will highlight the poul- than 96,000 birds.
The implementation process is tak- try industrys contribution to
nation building, including the with the respective govern- about 50 per cent of the revenue retail price of between $90 and
ing too long. More dialogue is needed. ments, but must maintain an ef- from non-traditional agricultural $100 per pound for imported
Mass meetings of all the farmers are fact that farmers pay taxes
amounting to about fective lobby with the nations products in Jamaica. He said necks and backs, effectively out-
needed to keep the farmers updated fully. leaders to ensure we operate free over the past five years the doing low quality imports.
$46 billion a year, which help to
The process is too segmented, Salmon of unfair competition from layer and broiler industries, These industrious farmers
maintain such social amenities
charged. dumped, subsidised chicken, combined, have grown by close feed themselves and neighbours
as roads and schools, he said.
Salmon explained that coffee farm- the JBG executive said. to 25 per cent - a remarkable on a superior, home-grown
According to Mr. Salmon
ers we facing various challenge includ- Many people have no idea achievement, of which we can product, while saving foreign
local broiler farmers produce be-
ing the lack of technical and marketing tween 2.5 million and 3 million about the size of our industry be proud. This also speaks to the exchange. So, we need to en-
support from the Coffee Industry Board kilos of chicken meat every which involves a variety of skill close co-operation between the courage them. In fact, the ma-
and more than 50% drop in the price week. This is big business, but sets, such as the farmers, vets, government and the industries, jority of backyard farmers are
dealers paid for coffee beans. it is vulnerable to an ever pres- truck drivers, retailers, whole- aimed at feeding our nation. women, who support their fam-
During the 2016/17 crop we re- ent threat from the dumping of salers and food vendors, Mr. Mr. Salmon also told his ilies with that income. When
ceived $10,000 for each box of coffee cheap imports. This is the rea- Salmon said. audience that the importation of they sell meat from 100 chick-
delivered, however for the crop year to son we have to keep the public According to the JBG exec- chicken necks and backs had de- ens at retail value, they earn
2017/18 the price dipped to $4,000. This educated as to the value of the utive, the local poultry industry clined drastically in recent about six weeks minimum
low price is unsustainable and is driving industry and how it contributes is expected to bring in approxi- times, as backyard farmers were wage. And, thats a success story
farmers into bankruptcy, Salmon to communities. We have had mately J$54 billion in retail able to produce more whole more people need to hear
warned. good partnerships over the years sales in 2017, which represents chickens at the same cost as the about, Mr. Salmon said.
Cleanup JACRA act, before implementation

I t is my view that the passing of the Ja-

maica Agricultural Commodities Regu-
latory Authority bill into law was done at
ture which allows for third-party certifica-
tion and use of food safety standards and
market-driven quality issues.
Outside of these issues, I believe this
project (JACRA Act) is good for the or-
derly development of the agricultural sec-
the minimum without critical stakeholder 6. The law seeks to prescribe stan- tor, and I am therefore suggesting that the
consultation and for this, Donald Stan- dards for the code of good practice which Minister demur from invoking Section 1 of
berry, the Permanent Secretary of the Min- are conflicting with international norms the Act until and unless a stakeholders re-
istry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture, and market demands. view is completed and the necessary
and Fisheries, must be held responsible. amendments made.

No need to import sugar

The bill, in the main appeared to be
devoid of stakeholder participation and ap-

from out side the region!

peared to be rushed through the houses of

However, a preliminary reading of the
Jamaica Agricultural Commodities Regu- t seems crazy that the region is importing production. The re-
latory Authority Act 2016, indicates that sugar from places like Colombia or Mex- gional industry in
the project in the main is good for the agri- By omer thomas ico which we can supply at home or right 2017 produced
cultural sector, save that of a few offensive International Agricultural next door, Sugar Association of the 417,000 tonnes of
sections which if, was afforded the neces- Development Consultant Caribbean (SAC) chairman, R. Karl James sugar, far more than
sary transparency, could be avoided. responded said. estimated demand of
It is the opinion of a broad cross-sec- He was speaking at the International 320,000 tonnes in the
tion of farmers, agribusiness and intellec- are conflicting with other laws dealing with Sugar Organisation (ISO) in London last region.
good order and practices in the local busi- week at the annual conference on the global It seems crazy
tual leadership that the regulations to
ness environment. sugar sector. that the region is im-
support the Law is being done without con-
3. There are provisions of the Act that James further noted, Caribbean sugar porting sugar from
sultation or stakeholder participation. R. Karl James places like Colombia
are conflicting with Jamaican law which producers across the region are successfully
This should not be allowed in a soci- Chairman, Sugar or Mexico which we
ratified the Uruguay round of the World moving up the value chain to produce sugars
ety that prides itself on being compliant Association of can supply at home or
Trade Organization (WTO). which can be used directly by consumers and
with the best practices of most contempo- manufacturers. White sugar suitable for 98% the Caribbean right next door.
rary international conventions. 4. The Act which appears to be an
of all uses can now be produced within the Sugar can be a
The Law needs to be amended, even amalgamation of several commodity board tremendous force for good helping manu-
region. National strategies are in place for
before it gets the chance of being applied, Acts of the 1950s did not embrace the en- facturers to supporting the local economy
all of the key sugar industries.
for the following reasons: vironmental changes which make aspects We are now actively speaking with our and local jobs by sourcing their raw materi-
1. There are blatant constitutional con- of those acts obsolete; Is it an amalgama- local manufacturers who buy their sugar in- als locally; helping countries cut down on
flicts contained within the provisions of the tion of four outdated Laws? ternationally to understand and meet their their dollar import bills; and generating new
Act. 5. The Act seems to have ignored the supply requirements through regional sugar cheap clean energy for businesses and local
2. There are provisions of the Act that realities of the standardization infrastruc- people.


The Jamaica Dairy Development Board is inviting Farmers,

Milk Processors, Importers of Milk and Maufacturers to the Consultation with
Stakeholders Conference, to Sensitize and to receive feedback from stakeholders
on the future development pathway for the Jamaica Dairy Industry.

Friday, December 15, 2017 at Medallion hall hotel

Registration Begins at 7:30am.
For Further Information, Contact
the Jamaica Dairy Development Board: 619-1731


PJB - 16

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5 Pressure Setting on crop and wind conditions Working pressure: 3 to 4 bars
SAVES TIME 160 gallon poly tank Fiberglass lance with hose: 1400 mm
Hydraulic venture agitation Dual stage 34 gpm centrifugal pump Can keep safe working pressure
LESS FATIGUE Hydraulic duct controls standard Suitable for garden & household
NO PUMPING REQUIRED Chemical container rinse system cleaning
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Exceptional Battery Life for all day Recommended tractor 60 horsepower
operation ADVANTAGE:
& above No pumping
of can as with


2E Ashenheim Road, Kingston 11, Jamaica, W.I. | Phone: (876) 757-0022 | Fax: (876) 901-3854 | Email:

Charles Douglas, chairman of Jamaica 4h Club, shares a light moment with Ale-
cia Fulton, national home economics coordinator (c) and Shanique Allen, director
of finance and accounts during a farmers market held recently at the Clubs head
offices, Kingston 6.

The Agriculturalist
Prime Minister's Youth Award: Book your advert in..
Diandra Rowe, 26 (left) receives the Prime Minister's Youth Award in the cate-
gory of agriculture and agro-processing from Prime Minister Andrew holness.
Seventy-three other young people who have made outstanding contributions in
various areas were presented with the Prime Minister's Youth Awards for Excel-
lence, during a ceremony held last Wednesday on the lawns of the office of the
Prime Minister in Kingston. At the annual Denbigh Agricultural, Industrial and

Call 923-7471

Food Show held in August 2017, Diandra was also named the National Champion
Greenhouse Farmer and Most Innovative Farmer.

Garden Soil
Germination Medium
Fortified organic Matter
organic Fertilizer

What happens When organic Matter is Used?

Reduced fertilizer less reduced

Increased soil microbiology which in turn:
help crop roots extract nutrients from the soil making fertilizer usage more efficient
Activate nutrients recycling converting crop residue into nutrients, reducing
fertilizer requirements
Increases soil structure and porosity
Increases the soils ability to manage water:
humus holds 4 times its weight in water helping fight dry conditions
By increasing soil porosity excess rain is allowed to pass through the soil
humus holds soil in place reducing wind and water erosion

Knockalva Enterprises limited, trading as EASI-GRo, was founded in April 2014 to supply the needs
of the emerging sustainable agriculture market by providing the best organicbased growing products,
as well as the knowledge needed to economically implement sustainable, organic growing practices.


Member of Parliament for East Rural St. Andrew and wife of the
Prime Minister, Juliet holness, displays strawberries grown by


farmers in her constituency during her contribution to the
2017/18 Constituency Debate in the house of Representatives on
November 7. holness disclosed that over 50,000 blue mountain
coffee seedlings (tipica) are to be distributed to farmers in East Senior Veterinarian at the Jamaica Broilers Group, Dr. Michael Motta receiving the
Rural St. Andrew, under a joint project with the Embassy of Veterinarian of the Year Award, from Dr. Kevin C. Walker, Veterinary Special-
Japan called the Enhancement of Production of Blue Mountain
Coffee. We want to ensure that we have the best coffee and we
ist at the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture & Fisheries during the re-
maintain it and the tipica variety is the best there is, so we want cent Veterinary Medical Association awards ceremony. Dr. Motta was recognised
to expand that. our goal is to increase productivity, holness for developing Jamaicas first calf born to embryo transfer with a Jamaica hope
said. and a surrogate Red Poll dam.

191 Old Hope Road
Kingston 6
Tel: 977-4022/6727 or 618-0172
Fax: 927-2696


15 Barrett Street, Spanish Town
St. Catherine
Tel: 984-0625/5792 or 469-1910


@nicltdjamaica @NICJamaica

Irrigation...Making the Difference in Agriculture


EU and Gates foundation pledge 500 Coffee prices may

million for innovations in agriculture C
be poised for revival

offee prices could be ready to re-
cover as the market negotiates a pro-
he European Union together with the Bill duction deficit but the gains may
and Melinda Gates Foundation pledged struggle to last long, according to Sucden
on Tuesday (12 December) more than 500 Financial.
million over the next three years for research The commodities broker pegged
and innovation in agriculture.
global coffee production for the current
The EU, which is the largest donor for
2017-18 crop year at 154.4m bags, down
development aid, and the Bill and Melinda
from 156.3m bags last year, while con-
Gates Foundation, which is the larger phi-
sumption is expected to increase to 158m
lanthropist organisation in this field, will
work together on a joint initiative to drive bags.
research and technical and organisational The resulting deficit of 3.6m bags
innovations across agricultural and food could lend support to coffee prices,
systems in developing countries. which have been under consistent down-
Both sides consider that more science France's President Emmanuel Macron (R) and US entrepreneur and philantropist ward pressure for the last 12 months.
and innovation is required to address Bill Gates talk on the boat which carries heads of state to the One Planet Summit Meanwhile, the net short in New
some of the most pressing challenges at La Seine Musicale venue on the Ile Seguin in Boulogne-Billancourt, near Paris, York-traded arabica coffee futures and
posed by climate change. This joint initia- France, 12 December 2017. [Pool/EPA/EFE] options is approaching record highs,
tive will build on the outcomes of the Paris governments agree to end their heavy re- make a huge difference, particularly because which could leave the market vulnerable
Agreement and the recent COP23 held in liance on fossil fuels and limit further global of climate change. to a rapid spike, Sucden said, flagging the
Bonn on the role of agriculture in the climate warming. EU Commissioner for International Co- potential for a weakening dollar to sup-
change agenda. Innovations in agriculture may imply operation and Development Neven Mimica port price gains too.
Among other philanthropists, Bill Gates the use of GMOs. Bill Gates is known for his said that the impact of climate change was es- Greenback weakness against the
is one of the stars at the One Planet Summit support for genetic engineering. In an inter- pecially important for less developed coun- likes of the real boosts the value in dollar
hosted by French President Emmanuel view with the Wall Street Journal last year, tries, where extreme weather events can terms of assets in which, in this case,

Study ties pesticides in food to reduced fertility in women

Macron on the two-year anniversary of the he said that GMOs for Africa are going to cause dramatic yield reductions and even Brazil is a major player.
Paris climate accord, which saw nearly 200 famine. Source:
However, Sucden caution against
expecting any longer term price im-
provements, anticipating "the dark cloud

of a large Brazil crop to cap prices on the
(CNN) CropLife International, a trade association upside".
ruits and vegetables are an essential part representing the manufacturers of pesticides. Output in the worlds largest pro-
of a healthy pregnancy diet, providing vi- Collins was not involved in the study. ducer, Brazil, is slightly lower in 2017-
tamins and fiber. Yet some might also come "The JAMA research publication does 18 on 50.6m bags, due to the biennial
with pesticide residues. not show a direct link between pesticide
cycle of Brazilian production.
Among women undergoing infertility residue intake and pregnancy outcome, as the
ld need to be replenished, indicating that
treatment in the United States, consuming authors state. This is a hypothesis generating
"shipments will be low for the remainder
more fruits and vegetables with high amounts study, and as the authors recommend, we
agree that before a definitive outcome can be
of 2017", Sucden said.
of pesticide residue was associated with a
established the issues require further study," This supply scenario could be com-
lower chance of pregnancy and a higher risk
she said in an emailed statement. plicated by the onset of La Nina, which is
of pregnancy loss, according to a study pub-
lished in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine How harmful are pesticide residues? underway according to official US mete-
on Monday. School of Public Health and first author of The study involved 325 women between orologists, who give it a 65-75% chance
Pesticides are pest-killing substances the study. 18 and 45 who were undergoing infertility of continuing through the winter.

Sugar prices slow

often applied to fruits and vegetables to help "There have been concerns for some treatment with assisted reproductive technol-
protect them -- and us -- against harmful time that exposure to low doses of pesticides ogy at the Massachusetts General Hospital,

decline, after harp

mold, fungi, rodents, weeds and insects. through diet, such as those that we observed the researchers said.
There has been growing concern that expo- in this study, may have adverse health effects, The women completed a diet assessment

drop in Brazilian
sure to pesticides can be tied to certain acute especially in susceptible populations such as questionnaire and had their height, weight
and chronic human health concerns. pregnant women and their fetus, and on chil- and overall health measured, while the re-
"Most Americans are exposed to pesti- dren," she said. "Our study provides evidence searchers accounted for confounding factors
cides daily by consuming conventionally that this concern is not unwarranted." that could influence the study results, includ- ugar futures staged a - temporary - re-
grown fruits and vegetables," said Dr. Yu- Yet the findings should be digested with cau- ing their intake of supplements and residen- vival after data showed output in
Han Chiu, a research fellow in the depart- tion, said Janet Collins, executive vice pres- tial history. Brazils Centre South region tailing off
faster than had been thought, hampered

Illegal pesticide contamination of food imports on the rise

ment of nutrition at the Harvard T.H. Chan ident of science and regulatory affairs for
by wet weather as well as a preference
for making ethanol.
The Centre South, responsible for
some 90% of Brazilian sugar output, pro-

A | translated by Sam Morgan Unpublished field trials by pesticide ence of pesticides in food. duced 734,000 tonnes of the sweetener in
PARMA , ITALIAN: manufacturers show their products cause se- In total, 3,265 samples were tainted with the second half of November a slump
European Food Safety Agency (EFSA) rious harm to honeybees at high levels, lead- over-the-limit levels of pesticide, mostly of 35% on volumes in the same period
report has warned that 6.5% of food im- ing to calls from senior scientists for the from imports, and about 1,253 cases were last year.
ports from third countries contain pesticide companies to end the secrecy which cloaks contaminated by pesticides that are not ap-
The extent of the decline reflected
residue that exceeds the EUs maximum per- much of their research. proved in the EU.
largely a 22% drop in the volume of cane
mitted level. EURACTIV Spain reports. Of nearly 83,000 food samples The Spanish region of Aragn is set to
crushed, to 15.2m tonnes, thanks to wet
The EFSA, based in the northern Italian analysed, 97% complied with the rules, ei- request European funding from the Horizon
ther by being completely pesticide free (53% 2020 programme to combat environmental weather setbacks to harvesting.
city of Parma, said that its most recent data,
of the samples achieved this) or by being pollution caused by a now-banned pesticide. The fall in the milling [volume] is
collected in 2014, shows a slight increase
from 2013, when 5.7% of food was contam- within the legal limits. EURACTIV Spain reports. due to rains, which made harvesting in
inated. EFSA pesticide unit Head Jos Tarazona The European agency said that it is un- important sugarcane areas difficult, said
In terms of food produced by the 28 explained that the EUs results from 2014 likely that the levels of pesticide it detected Antonio de Padua Rodrigues, the Unica
member states, as well as Iceland and Nor- are in line with what was recorded the year would pose a threat to peoples health in the technical director, adding that onset of
way, just 1.6% contained limit-exceeding before, meaning that the EU is continuing the short or long term. seasonal closures by more mills had also
pesticide residue, up from 1.4% in 2013. protect consumers by controlling the pres- undermined output.

Eat what we grow

Grow what we eat
Over the past six years Noranda Jamaica Bauxite Partners
has been leading the charge to transform agriculture by sharing
greenhouse technology and spearheading the building of
sixty greenhouses for small farmers in our mining areas.

We call it the greenhouse revolution helping to feed

Noranda Jamaica Bauxite Partners

Browns town, St Ann Jamaica

Six Ways Drones Are Revolutionizing Agriculture

by Michal Mazur ranging, or LiDAR, methoden- spot bacterial or fungal infections changes in plants and indicate their the case of crop failure, the farmer ables a drone to adjust altitude as on trees. By scanning a crop using health. A speedy response can save will be able to document losses
nmanned aerial vehicles the topography and geography both visible and near-infrared light, an entire orchard. In addition, as more efficiently for insurance
(UAVs)better known as vary, and thus avoid collisions. drone-carried devices can identify soon as a sickness is discovered, claims.
droneshave been used commer- Consequently, drones can scan the which plants reflect different farmers can apply and monitor Whats Next?
cially since the early 1980s. Today, ground and spray the correct amounts of green light and NIR remedies more precisely. These Looking further into the fu-
however, practical applications for ture, UAVs might involve fleets, or
drones are expanding faster than swarms, of autonomous drones that
ever in a variety of industries, could tackle agricultural monitor-
thanks to robust investments and ing tasks collectively, as well as hy-
the relaxing of some regulations brid aerial-ground drone actors that
governing their use. Responding to could collect data and perform a
the rapidly evolving technology, variety of other tasks.
companies are creating new busi- So, whats slowing the
ness and operating models for progress of drones in agriculture?
UAVs. Beyond the barriers to widespread
The total addressable value of drone adoption in all industries
drone-powered solutions in all ap- safety of drone operations, privacy
plicable industries is significant issues, and insurance-coverage
more than $127 billion, according questionsthe biggest agricultural
to a recent PwC analysis. concern is the type and quality of
Among the most promising data that can be captured. To ad-
areas is agriculture, where drones dress this, the industry will push for
offer the potential for addressing more sophisticated sensors and
several major challenges. With the cameras, as well as look to develop
worlds population projected to drones that require minimal train-
reach 9 billion people by 2050, ex- ing and are highly automated.
perts expect agricultural consump- For more on drones in agricul-
tion to increase by nearly 70 ture and seven other industries, see
percent over the same time period. comprehensive re-
In addition, extreme weather Drone options for agricultural crop spraying continues to grow with UAV platforms from port.
events are on the rise, creating ad- Japan, China, France and companies like Yamaha and DJI. -Michal Mazur is a partner in
ditional obstacles to productivity. PwCs Drone-Powered Solutions
Agricultural producers must amount of liquid, modulating dis- light. This information can produce two possibilities increase a plants division, @PwCDrone, based in
embrace revolutionary strategies tance from the ground and spraying multispectral images that track ability to overcome disease. And in Poland.
for producing food, increasing pro- in real time for even coverage. The

Eliminating enemies
technology: the Future of Agriculture
ductivity, and making sustainabil- result: increased efficiency with a
ity a priority. Drones are part of the reduction of in the amount of
solution, along with closer collabo- chemicals penetrating into ground-

ration between governments, tech- water. In fact, experts estimate that
nology leaders, and industry. aerial spraying can be completed By Anthony King
up to five times faster with drones
he Food and Agriculture Or-
Six options for than with traditional machinery.
ganization of the United Na-
Agricultural Drones 4. Crop monitoring: Vast
tions estimates that 2040% of
Drone technology will give fields and low efficiency in crop
global crop yields are lost each
the agriculture industry a high- monitoring together create farm-
year to pests and diseases, despite
technology makeover, with plan- ings largest obstacle. Monitoring
the application of around two-mil-
ning and strategy based on challenges are exacerbated by in-
lion tonnes of pesticide.
real-time data gathering and pro- creasingly unpredictable weather
Intelligent devices, such as
cessing. PwC estimates the market conditions, which drive risk and
robots and drones, could allow
for drone-powered solutions in field maintenance costs. Previ-
farmers to slash agrichemical use
agriculture at $32.4 billion. Fol- ously, satellite imagery offered the
by spotting crop enemies earlier to
lowing are six ways aerial and most advanced form of monitoring.
allow precise chemical applica-
ground-based drones will be used But there were drawbacks. Images
had to be ordered in advance, could tion or pest removal, for example.
throughout the crop cycle:
be taken only once a day, and were The market is demanding
1. Soil and field analysis:
imprecise. Further, services were foods with less herbicide and pes-
Drones can be instrumental at the
extremely costly and the images ticide, and with greater quality,
start of the crop cycle. They pro-
quality typically suffered on certain says Red Whittaker, a robotics en-
duce precise 3-D maps for early
days. Today, time-series animations gineer at Carnegie Mellon who
soil analysis, useful in planning
designed and patented an auto-
Drones with precision sprayers (insert) apply agrochemicals
seed planting patterns. After plant- can show the precise development
mated guidance system for trac-
only where they are needed. Image: Crop Angel Ltd
ing, drone-driven soil analysis pro- of a crop and reveal production in-
efficiencies, enabling better crop tors in 1997. That challenge can lished. Scientists from Carnegie problems with irrigation. The
vides data for irrigation and
management. be met by robots. Mellon have begun to test the the- company processes drone data
nitrogen-level management.
5. Irrigation: Drones with hy- We predict drones, mounted ory in sorghum (Sorghum bi- from crop fields in more than 50
2. Planting: Startups have
perspectral, multispectral, or ther- with RGB or multispectral cam- color), a staple in many parts of countries. It is now using machine
created drone-planting systems that
mal sensors can identify which eras, will take off every morning Africa and a potential biofuel crop learning to train its systems to dif-
achieve an uptake rate of 75 per-
parts of a field are dry or need im- before the farmer gets up, and in the United States. ferentiate between crops and
cent and decrease planting costs by
85 percent. These systems shoot provements. Additionally, once the identify where within the field Agribotix, an agriculture weeds, and hopes to have this ca-
pods with seeds and plant nutrients crop is growing, drones allow the there is a pest or a problem, says data-analysis company in Boul- pability ready for the 2017 grow-
into the soil, providing the plant all calculation of the vegetation index, Green. As well as visible light, der, Colorado, supplies drones ing season. We will be able to
the nutrients necessary to sustain which describes the relative density these cameras would be able to and software that use near-in- ping growers with an alert saying
life. and health of the crop, and show collect data from the invisible frared images to map patches of you have weeds growing in your
3. Crop spraying: Distance- the heat signature, the amount of parts of the electromagnetic spec- unhealthy vegetation in large field, here and here, says crop
measuring equipmentultrasonic energy or heat the crop emits. trum that could allow farmers to fields. scientist Jason Barton, an execu-
echoing and lasers such as those 6. health assessment: Its es- pinpoint a fungal disease, for ex- Images can also reveal po- tive at Agribotix.
used in the light-detection and sential to assess crop health and ample, before it becomes estab- tential causes, such as pests or

In case you
missed it
Over 300 individuals from all across Jamaica converged at the Jamaica
Conference Centre for the 2017 Hi-Pro Dealer Awards to celebrate the
achievements of high-performing dealers.

Hi-Pros top dealers received

Zone and All-Island awards
for excellence in Feed and
Merchandise Sales.

Gospel Artiste, Kevin

Downswell, gave a
captivating performance
to an excited audience,
who sang and danced
along throughout his set.
Knowledge Page

Another cutting edge farm product from hi-Pro

I n keeping with its commitment to bring
cutting edge products to the local market,
the Hi-Pro Division of the Jamaica Broil-
ago, but has undergone evolution and im-
provement of the polymer and coating
process to be at its current advanced stage.
The fertilizer can be custom blended,
and can extend from a 45-day release to a
360-day release. In fact, the more layers of
ers Group has introduced the Diamond R In recognizing the significance of the wrapping, the longer it will take for the re-
Purkote Control Release Fertilizer in vari- new product to the local farming commu- lease to take place, she explained.
ous blends. nity, Conley Salmon, President Jamaica According to Jackson it is ideal for the
Diamond R has an exclusive agree- Operations at the Jamaica Broilers Group, growing of such crops as Irish potato,
ment with Pursell Agri-Tech to distribute said: Our aim at Hi-Pro is to bring to the tomatoes, peppers, sugar cane, citrus, turf,
the Purkote brand. local market the most innovative support container plants, flowering plants and nurs-
The Control Release Fertilizer will be systems so that our farmers can realise the erie
available to the farming community as of best results. This new product is, therefore, In addition, Hi-Pro is offering our
January 2018 at Hi-Pro Farm Supplies. in line with that strategy and we welcome it farmers access to a custom blend of CRF,
The product, which is an innovative as an addition to the wide range of farming based on a soil analysis which our experts
technology for sustainable plant nutrition, supplies which we stock, he said. can do free of charge. So, please call us,
is an environmentally friendly product ca- Tricia Jackson, Store Operations Man- Jackson said.
pable of withstanding heavy rainfall with- ager, Hi-Pro Ace, said each granule is Diamond R has the exclusive contract
out leaching and with almost no run-off wrapped in polymer plastic for protection, for the Purkote brand throughout the
into rivers and other water sources. with a specified amount of polymer coat- Caribbean, so by extension, Hi-Pro Farm
However, it needs heat and water to be Conley Salmon ing used to regulate the release of each Supplies has exclusive rights in Jamaica.

Celebrating December 5 as World Soil Day

activated. The controlled release technol- President -Jamaica Operations, granule.
ogy was introduced more than 40 years Jamaica Broilers Group

Indeed our wealth is in the soil

A s Jamaica continues to strive towards
the national goal of achieving sustain-
able growth and job creation, it is abun-
It is against that background that the ob-
servance of World Soils Day assumes in-
creased significance.
We must all heed the need to manage
and preserve, and nurture and enrich our soil
resources and so the outreach to our farmers
dantly clear that agriculture and rural And, I wish to commend the Agricul- and student farmers is very important.
development have a critical role to play in tural Land Management Division of the I note, in fact, with great interest, that
this thrust. Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agricul- your activities today are being held at an
This is so because it is the agricultural ture and Fisheries for leading the charge in agricultural training institution and I urge the
sector that forms the base from which in- having Jamaica join the rest of the world young farmers in training to pay keen atten-
dustrial growth and development stem and today, Tuesday, December 5, 2017, in cele- tion to the information that will be shared
therefore agriculture and agro-industry must brating World Soils Day. and to play their part in the dissemination of
grow, if the economy is to grow. And, in I also salute the Food and Agriculture that information.
order to grow the sector, it must be organ- Organization for having established this im- I encourage the team from the Ministry,
ised and managed in a structured and busi- portant annual observance, which serves to through the Agricultural Land Management
ness-like manner that takes in all the vital raise awareness of the importance of this Division, to continue to intensify its soil
steps from the ground up along the value natural resource. health assessment programme in order to
chain. By J.C. Hutchinson As you may be aware, soil is the basis evaluate the status of soil degradation and to
Indeed our wealth is in the soil and we Minister Without Portfolio for food, feed, fuel and fibre production. In- change the trends of unsustainable farming
need to match our idle lands with our Ministry of Industry, Commerce, deed, the maintenance or enhancement of practices.
human, intellectual and material resources Agriculture and Fisheries global soil resources is essential if human- Best practices in soil health are essen-
to foster continual growth and expansion in facilitate more value-added production and itys need for food, water, and energy secu- tial to the productivity and health of both

Promoting sustainable management of soil resources

agriculture and in turn to use agriculture to manufacturing. rity is to be met, especially in this era of crops and livestock and, ultimately, to us, the
rapid climate change. end users - the consumers.

W orld Soil Day (WSD) is held annually

on December 5 as a means to focus
attention on the importance of healthy soil
to inappropriate management practices, pop-
ulation pressure driving unsustainable in-
tensification and inadequate governance
source for construction and raw materials.
The maintenance or enhancement of
global soil resources is essential if human-
and advocating for the sustainable manage- over this essential resource. itys need for food, water, energy and secu-
ment of soil resources. The 5 pillars of action; Soil manage- rity is to be met.
An international day to celebrate Soil ment; Awareness raising; Research; Infor- Soils have been neglected for too long.
was recommended by the International mation and data and Harmonization Hence the World Soils Day campaign aims
Union of Soil Sciences (IUSS) in 2002. The Agricultural Land Management Di- to connect people with soils and raise aware-
Under the leadership of the Kingdom of vision a division of the Ministry of Industry, ness on its critical importance in our lives.
Thailand and within the framework of the Commerce, Agriculture & Fisheries with re- Areas of fertile soils are under pressure due
Global Soil Partnership, FAO has supported sponsibility for all soils related issues is this to climate change and competing unsustain-
the formal establishment of WSD as a global year promoting soil as the basis for food, able land uses. To preserve our fertile soils
awareness raising platform. The FAO Con- feed, fuel, and fibre production. The Agricultural Land Management Di-
ference unanimously endorsed World Soil
By Marvalee Walker Soil is the reservoir for at least a quar- vision is encouraging our farmers to do soil
Day in June 2013 and requested its official
Land Capability Planner ter of global biodiversity and therefore re- testing to preserve the nutrient status of soils.
adoption at the 68th UN General Assembly.
Agricultural Land Management Division quires the same attention as above-ground For Further information on
In December 2013 the UN General Assem- biodiversity. Soils play a role in the supply Soil testing and analysis contact
bly responded by designating 5 December Soil is a finite natural resource. On a human of clean water and resilience to floods and The Agricultural Land
2014 as the first official World Soil Day. time-scale it is non-renewable. However, de- droughts. The largest store of terrestrial car- Management Division
The Global Soil Partnership is dedicat- spite the essential role that soil plays in bon is in the soil so that its preservation may 191 Old Hope Road, Kingston 6
ing World Soil Day 2017 to the theme "Car- human livelihoods, there is a worldwide in- contribute to climate change adaptation and Tel : (876) 927-0441 or 977-0322
ing for the Planet starts from the Ground". crease in degradation of soil resources due mitigation. Soils also serve as a platform and

traditional Christmas

Banana Jamaican Sweet

Fruit Cake Potato Pudding
cup butter by Winsome Murphy
2 cups brown sugar Jamaican Sweet Potato Pudding
4 large eggs is a favorite Sunday desert of Ja-
2 cups all-purpose flour maicans and is fondly known as
3 cups candied fruit hell a top, hell a bottom and hal-
2 cups chopped lelujah in the middle
cup pineapple canned,
candied and chopped
1 cup walnuts chopped
1 tablespoon orange juice
1 teaspoon orange zest grated
teaspoon orange extract
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
teaspoon nutmeg
teaspoon cloves, ground EAT JAMAICAN DAY:
1 teaspoon cinnamon Ingredients: (l-r) Donovan Stanberry - Permanent Secretary MICAF, Norman Grant - JAS President, Custos of
1 cups bananas mashed 2 pounds sweet potato St.Andrew Patricia Dunwell, Trudy-ann Ashmead - National Farm Queen, Shanique Shand-
1 cup flour
Kingston and St. Andrew Farm Queen... look at a variety of Exotic Fruits at November 25th annu-
2 cups coconut milk
ally as Eat Jamaican Day held in Kingston.

1 cups raisin (some used other

dried fruits)
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 1/2 teaspoon grated nutmeg
1 teaspoon mixed spice
1 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon salt
Directions 1 teaspoon margarine
Prepare two 2 Litre (9" x 5") loaf Get our recipes on your mobile
pans. Preheat oven to 300 F. In a phone. Buy our iPhone or An-
large bowl combine the fruit, droid Recipe App. Buy the cook
dates, pineapple and walnuts. book Simple Jamaican Cook-
Dredge them with cup of the ing. Looking for Jamaican
flour. Sift the remaining flour to- recipe ingredients & seasoning
gether with the baking powder, Shop Now in our online store.
baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nut-
meg and cloves. Set aside. Method:
Cream the butter, add the Wash and pare off the skin
sugar and beat until the mixture of the potatoes
is light and fluffy. Beat in the Wash again then grate
eggs, one at a time. Beat in the Grate coconut, add water and

All eyes on
orange rind, orange juice and or- squeeze juice through a strainer
ange extract. Mash the bananas Blend flour, mixed spice

FHIA banana:
with a fork. (A food processor (raisins etc) ,salt, and nutmeg.
will tend to liquefy the bananas Combine this mixture with the
and this will change the texture grated potatoes and mix well
of the cake.) Alternately stir the Add sugar, fruits and coconut
bananas and the flour mixture milk. Mix well.
into the creamed mixture. Stir in Grease pan, pour in batter, bake
Technical staff of The Banana Board display a
bunch of the new FHIA 25 variety which is known
the floured fruit and nuts. at 350 degrees F for 40-60 min- for its many hands. Sharing lens time are (l-r) Al-
Turn into the prepared pans utes or until done fred Everett - Extension Officer; Wayne Peart - In-
and bake for 2 hours and 15 min- novation and Technology Transfer Manager; Oral
utes, or until a skewer inserted Lewis - Coordinator of Extension Services and
into the middle of each cake Winford Madden - Extension Officer. Also pic-
comes out clean. Cool in the tured is Nicole West-Hayles - Communications
pans for 20 minutes, then turn Specialist on The Banana Board Grant Contract
out onto racks. for Technical Services, funded by The European
Union. Developed in Honduras by the Honduran
Yields about 5 pounds of cake. Foundation for Agricultural Research (Fundacion

We publish your school and

Hondurena de Investigacion Agricola - FHIA),
FHIA was introduced to Jamaica in 2001. The

college news, photos etc.,

new varieties are most suitable for cooking and
agro-processing. While the FHIA takes an addi-
tional four to six months to mature, it is worth the
wait providing upwards of 17 bunches for har-

The Agriculturalist Call 923-7471

vesting. The FHIA cooks in less than five min-
utes, oozes less stain, easier to peel and leaves
no discolouration in the pot.