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JIS News

Approximately 15,000 of 24,000 farmers in Clarendon have already been registered under the Rural Agricultural Development Authority’s (RADA) Agricultural Business Information Systems (ABIS) Programme.
Percival Shaw, Parish Manager for RADA, Clarendon told JIS News that the registration procedure was part of the government’s anti-praedial larceny, being initiated by government.
He noted that the process, which started in March, was going smoothly. “I believe that a number of farmers have been progressively buying into the idea of the registration especially because a number of them have been affected by praedial larceny. It has been about four months since the registration started and the flow has been steady and smooth,” he said.Encouraging the remaining 9,000 farmers to register as soon as possible, Mr. Shaw noted that the process would enable them to access receipt books and benefit from several other initiatives to prevent praedial larceny.
According to Mr. Shaw, the receipts provide inspectors, which include the police and/or agri-wardens, with the means of verifying the produce bearers’ purchases and also gives the inspectors the power to act in absence of such receipts, when vehicles with large agricultural produce are checked.
He mentioned further, that the registration under ABIS had other benefits, which include the unique and official identification of all farmers; access to information by both farmers and buyers on the location and estimated volumes of crops and livestock available; activity and produce tracking; determination of the agricultural sector’s capacity to expand; and provide information to agricultural suppliers on input needs.
In addition, he said that the system could help to fairly distribute disaster relief claims and farming community demographics such as age, gender, education and land tenure could be obtained to stimulate and sustain agricultural activity.
It will also enable government planners and agricultural development strategist to provide information to the World Trade Organization, and other trade treaty groups to support import protection claims.
The farmer registration process is being facilitated under the Agricultural Produce Act, which was passed in Parliament last year.