Agriculture Minister Announces Initiatives to Resuscitate Beef Industry

Minister of Agriculture and Lands, Roger Clarke, yesterday (April 18) announced a number of initiatives to resuscitate the beef and dairy sector,including the implementation of a heifer rescue programme, and revamping the artificial insemination programme to make it more accessible to farmers and to accelerate breeding.
Mr. Clarke, who was making his contribution to the 2007/08 Budget Debate in Gordon House, said that the Ministry, in conjunction with the Food and Agricultural Organisation, would be undertaking a market study of Jamaican beef and dairy genetics.
In addition, discussions were being held with the Development Bank of Jamaica to determine a model for improving slaughtering and meat processing facilities island-wide. “The Ministry has already identified lands in Amity Hall to be used as a possible site for one such facility,” he informed.
He noted further that “we will be substantially improving our facility at Minard (St. Ann) in terms of pasture and reinstatement of performance testing.”The Agriculture Ministry said that discussions were also being held with relevant stakeholders to address the decline, noting that recovery of the sector was critical to food security and rural development.

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