The Government is providing more than $100 million worth of inputs and subsidy to farmers for the processing of coffee.
“We are mobilising fertiliser to help our coffee farmers. We are also exploring new markets for coffee and have enlisted the support of the Jamaica Promotions Corporation (JAMPRO) to that end,” said Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries, Hon. Floyd Green.
He was making his contribution to the 2021/22 Sectoral Debate in the House of Representatives on May 12.
He noted, further, that the Ministry will be working with the Ministry of Finance and the Public Service and international partners to have a dedicated infrastructure programme for the Blue Mountain coffee area.
Minister Green said that the industry also has to confront the issue of ensuring that “those who farm coffee can work a liveable wage or that they can move up the value chain to maximise the returns on their investments”.
It is in this regard, he said, that he has asked the Jamaica Agricultural Commodities and Regulatory Authority (JACRA) to develop the coffee industry business model and to use public-private partnerships to drive that process.
He informed that the model will have a dedicated focus on resuscitating High Mountain coffee, expanding the reach of Blue Mountain coffee, and increasing public-private collaboration.
“In fact, I have met with our coffee farmers, exporters and our major players like Salada and Nestlé to gather their views and share my vision. As part of the private-public collaboration, Nestlé Jamaica Limited, in recognition of its 80th year of doing business in Jamaica, has decided to demonstrate its long-term commitment to the country by scaling up of coffee production in the High Mountain region,” Minister Green told the House.
He explained that Nestlé has committed to providing funding support, technical assistance and planting materials through nursery support.
“This programme will be carried out initially for seven years with an overall commitment for 25 years,” he said.