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Minister of Agriculture, Dr. Christopher Tufton, has said that he is in discussion with the Bodles Agricultural Research Station among other entities, to identify alternative feed for the livestock industry. “We are looking at a feedstock for livestock that could replace and could complement the traditional methods of feeding as an alternative to dealing with the cost issues, which have been raised,” he stated. Dr. Tufton was addressing concerns raised at the annual general meeting of the Jamaica Pig Farmers Association (JPFA) held recently in Ocho Rios, about the escalating cost of feed and the need to find alternative feedstock.
On the suggestion that idle crown land could be planted to provide a source of animal feed, Minister Tufton told the JPFA members that he will be meeting with the bauxite companies to discuss, among other things, the possibility of utilizing mined-out lands to supply feed for livestock. “I think we have to now challenge them, encourage them and work with them to restore these lands to a level which can now improve the critical foundation and basis for us to create food security,” he stated. Scores of pig farmers from across the island attended the fifth annual meeting, which was held under the theme: ‘Improving Technology at the Farm Level for Regional and International Competitiveness’.The meeting gave farmers the opportunity to raise concerns with the Agriculture Minister and become actively involved in discussion that will improve the industry.
President of the St. Thomas Pig Grower’s Association, Howard McPherson, told JIS News that he benefited tremendously from the forum.
“It was a wonderful session and we have absorbed a lot of information and we will be going back to St. Thomas to put it out to those of our members, who were not able to attend,” he said.
The JPFA was launched in July 2002 with a mission to develop and improve the pig/pork industry and to ensure that the industry is sustained as a major contributor to the development of the economy. Membership is open to any person or company/organization involved in pig rearing.

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