Hon. J.C. Hutchinson (left), Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries, views sweet pepper being cultivated in one of the greenhouses operated by the Elliot Farmers Community Enterprise group in Cromwell land, St. Mary, on February 27, 2019. At right is Marvalee Tomlinson Russell, President. Over 900 sweet pepper plants, kale and cilantro are currently being cultivated by the group.
Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries, Hon J.C. Hutchinson, had high praises for the Elliot Farmers Community Enterprise Group for its greenhouse project, aimed at providing employment with emphasis on sustainable agricultural farming.
Speaking at the project’s official launch in Cromwell Land District, St. Mary, on February 27, 2019, Minister Hutchinson emphasised the importance of rural economic development to national development, noting that some 45% of Jamaica’s population resides in rural communities and some 20% of our population make a livelihood from agriculture, the vast majority being from small-scale holdings.
“Rural economic development is therefore critical to national development if we are to move our country forward and secure sustainable development for our citizens. It goes without saying therefore that we must invest more in infrastructure and more in rural development,” said Minister Hutchinson.
The Minister noted that with the negative impact of climate change on the agricultural sector, local production has become less predictable and more erratic in response to the uncertainty in rainfall for rain-fed production. This, he said, underscores the need for farmers to practise climate-resilient farming.
Referring to an IDB/FAO study on ‘Change on Agriculture in Jamaica in 2013’, which indicated that the agricultural sector suffered an estimated $14-billion loss due to climate change events between 1994 and 2010, Minister Hutchinson said this had implications for Jamaica’s food security as it impacted the availability and affordability of food.
The Elliot Farmers Community Enterprise group was formed in April 2016 and with funding from the Environmental Foundation of Jamaica has provided training in greenhouse farming for eight teachers from St. Mary Technical High, Marymount High School for Girls and Albion Mountain Primary School.
Welcome to the official website of the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries.
The Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries (MICAF) has been charged with the responsibility of driving the integration of the production of primary agricultural produce along all the stages of the supply chain through to value added and facilitating full commercialization of outputs of the agriculture, manufacturing, and service sectors.
We have, therefore, placed much energy and enthusiasm into the development of this website to provide timely information on the Ministry, our agencies and programmes.
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