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Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries, Hon. Dr. Christopher Tufton, has called on farmers’ organisations to work together for the advancement of the sector.
“Unless all of us work together to achieve a harmonious relationship in a framework where we can depend on each other, it is going to undermine all of us as farmers,” the Minister told farmers attending the Jamaica Agricultural Society’s (JAS) 115th annual general meeting, held on July 14, at the Denbigh Showground in May Pen, Clarendon.
The Minister argued that given the diversity of the farming structure, strong organisations are needed to bring players together. “In a context where you have a lot of small farmers, as we do in Jamaica, farming on small plots of land, it is important that we have strong farmers’ organisations to group people together, and to work on the challenges that we have to face,” he said.
Lauding the work of the JAS, the Minister said the members have stood at the forefront of bringing farmers’ issues and positions forward, thereby keeping agriculture relevant as an important sector in the economy.
“No one of us can ignore the contribution that the JAS has made over the 115 years. You don’t live that long if you are not doing something right. Longevity is a function of performance,” he emphasised.
Dr. Tufton said that all the groups must play their role in the continued development of the farming sector.