Agricultural Production Zone to be Established in Portland

Photo: Michael Sloley Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries, Hon. J.C. Hutchinson (left), addresses farmers and investors in Spring Garden, Portland, on January 12.

Story Highlights

  • Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries, Hon. J.C. Hutchinson, is encouraging farmers in Spring Garden, Portland, to organise and benefit from expansion in the agro-industry.
  • Addressing farmers in the area on January 12, Mr. Hutchinson said they will benefit more by engaging as a structured group, working with RADA and other agencies.

Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries, Hon. J.C. Hutchinson, is encouraging farmers in Spring Garden, Portland, to organise and benefit from expansion in the agro-industry.

The Government is in the process of entering into a long-term lease for the 200-acre Lennox property from the Agro Investment Corporation (AIC) to the Rural Agricultural Development Authority (RADA), for the setting up of an agricultural production zone.

Addressing farmers in the area on January 12, Mr. Hutchinson said they will benefit more by engaging as a structured group, working with RADA and other agencies.

“Once you start producing, anything that you can produce, there will be markets,” the Minister told farmers and investors in the area.

Seventy-five acres of the land are earmarked for banana production, 50 acres for plantain, 50 for pepper, and 25 for onion. Sections will be reserved for the youth and small farmers.

The crops produced by the farmers can be sold and processed in the agricultural production zone.

The Minister said the nearby College of Agriculture, Science and Education (CASE), will be playing a leading role to ensure the sustainability of the project, as all must be done to ensure that it is successful.

He encouraged the farmers to do intercropping with peppers, which take three months to mature and can be a sure way to earn, before the banana and plantain crops are ready for the market.

The aim of the Minister’s meeting with the farmers and investors was to explore and identify opportunities in agriculture, and to see how arable lands can be used for the development of the parish.

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