JIS News

Story Highlights

  • Members of 4-H clubs in 10 schools across Kingston and St. Andrew are expected to vie for the top prize in a debate competition, to be held as part of the 18th staging of Agrofest 2014.
  • The agricultural and industrial show will be held on the grounds of Jamaica College in St. Andrew, on Saturday, May 31.
  • The competition is being held in honour of the late Velma Walker, who served the Jamaica 4-H Clubs as Parish Development Officer for Kingston, and then St. Andrew.

Members of 4-H clubs in 10 schools across Kingston and St. Andrew are expected to vie for the top prize in a debate competition, to be held as part of the 18th staging of Agrofest 2014.

The agricultural and industrial show will be held on the grounds of Jamaica College in St. Andrew, on Saturday, May 31, from 8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.

President of the Jamaica Agricultural Society (JAS), Senator Norman Grant, made the announcement on May 22, as he addressed the official launch of the show at the offices of the JAS in downtown Kingston.

He noted that the competition is being held in honour of the late Velma Walker, who served the Jamaica 4-H Clubs as Parish Development Officer for Kingston, and then St. Andrew.

“Because of her (Ms. Walker’s) commitment to the development of the 4-H Movement, the St. Andrew Association of Branch Societies has decided to partner with the (Jamaica) 4-H Clubs to have this special competition in her honour,” the Senator said.

Parish Development Officer, St. Andrew 4-H Clubs, Demoy Nash, explained that the competition will involve students from high and primary schools, who will debate on the event’s theme: ‘Grow What We Eat… Eat What We Grow’.

He informed that following the judging of the competitors, the top three will proceed to the main platform to again present their arguments to the show’s attendees.

The winner will receive a trophy in Ms. Walker’s name as well as a cash prize of $8,000. The second and third place prizes are $6,000, and $4,000 respectively.

In the meantime, Senator Grant informed that the show will feature other contests, including the Eat Jamaican cook off, Farm Queen, as well as the Champion Blue Mountain Coffee Farmer competitions.

He noted that patrons will be treated to a wide assortment of exhibits, inclusive of locally grown produce, interactive agricultural exhibits, live entertainment, livestock shows and displays, Police mounted troupe and the Guardsman canine display.

“Entertainment will be provided for the entire family throughout the day, and there will be a Farmers’ Market, where fresh agricultural produce will be available for patrons,” he said, adding that the show will also cater to younger audiences, engaging them with a Children’s Village.

Senator Grant also informed that a lucky patron will be awarded a gate prize at the end of the show of a weekend for two at the Negril Tree House Resort.

He said that admission for adults remains at $400; and children under 12 years will pay $100 at the gate. In addition, all 4-H clubbites will be allowed to enter for $100.

The official tour of the grounds commences at 1:00 p.m. and the opening ceremony begins at 2:00 p.m., when Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries, Hon. Roger Clarke, will give the main address.

The show is being put on at a cost of $3 million by the Kingston and St. Andrew Association of Branches Societies (ABS) of the JAS, in collaboration with the Rural Agricultural Development Authority (RADA). The major sponsors are the Ministry of Agriculture, with a provision of $1 million; and the Mavis Bank Coffee Factory Limited, with a sponsorship of $500,000.

Other sponsors include: Power 106, Negril Tree House, Strawberry Hill, Jamaica International Insurance Company Limited (JIIC), Jewel Dunn’s River Beach Resort, and Sunset Jamaica Grande.