JAMAICA – Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries Minister Audley Shaw says the ministry is targeting the implementation of several strategies intended to boost Jamaica’s livestock and dairy industries and enable the country to become more self-sufficient in these areas.
According to Jamaica Gleaner, he said the strategies are aimed at reducing imports and improve the country’s beef, goat meat (chevon) and milk production.
“We are going to have to import embryos and we are going to have to find clean disease-free cattle to import calves into Jamaica, so that we can start to aggressively rebuild the beef industry and the dairy industry,” he said.
Noting that this has been done with pigs and chickens, Mr Shaw contended that “we can do it with beef and we can do it with dairy.”
The minister was speaking at the opening ceremony for the Youth in Agriculture Village at the 66th Denbigh Agricultural, Industrial and Food Show at the Denbigh Showground in May Pen, Clarendon on 4 August.
Noting that preserving Jamaica’s food security is a high priority for the Government, Mr Shaw said focus on repositioning the country to become self-sufficient in crop and livestock production, is also intended to further reduce imports.
Need to Reduce Imports
He argued that it is unacceptable that Jamaica is importing as much as 85 per cent of the foods being consumed by locals and tourists, “when we have so much (arable) land and technology that is available”.
Hence the need, Mr Shaw added, for the country to “have a plan” that effectively rectifies this scenario.
Meanwhile, Mr Shaw congratulated Hi-Pro Ace Supercentre for its outstanding work over the past 60 years that has contributed to the agricultural sector’s enhancement.
Mr Shaw, who also spoke at the company’s unveiling of new products designed to revolutionise the cattle industry, during the Denbigh show on Saturday, Shaw said Hi-Pro should be praised for its consistent pursuit of excellence aimed at boosting local agricultural productivity.
TheCattleSite News Desk