Citrus Replanting Project Ends Next Month


The Citrus Replanting Project, which was implemented to prevent the decline of the citrus industry, through the planting of trees resistant to the citrus tristeza virus, comes to an end in May of this year.
Project Coordinator, Dr. Florence Young, told JIS News that the project, which was implemented in January 2001, was extended from April 2006 to March 2007, to allow for further implementation and research work.
She noted that the additional research, undertaken by consultants from the Citrus Protection Agency, the Citrus Growers Association and the Biotech Centre of the University of West Indies, Mona have been completed, and the reports would be submitted to the Ministry of Agriculture and Lands.
“All three consultants have submitted what I would call draft of reports, so basically we are refining to get to what will be the final report from each of these entities. It is my expectation that this will be completed in the very near future,” she informed.
Since its implementation, the project has been successful in preparing 91 farm plans; 7,910 farm visits were carried out; and an extension service provider was engaged. Certification services are fully operational, and the production and movement of 499,614 certified plants from 20 registered nurseries has been monitored, through 757 nursery visits in the case of certifications.
A two-year public education component of the project has been completed; in the area of entomology, research work has been completed; in the area of agronomy, research pilots were established and several applications of fertilizer done; leaf and soil samples were collected from all research plots, and inter-cropping of research plots done at Montpelier and Orange River Research Stations in St. James.
The Citrus Replanting Project is intended to provide growers with the necessary technical information to effectively replant and manage groves. It also aims to increase the technical capabilities of the research staff to continually establish, monitor and evaluate technologies.

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