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JIS News

Manager of the St. Ann branch of the Rural Agricultural Development Authority (RADA), Pedro Worghs, says that RADA expects a very good year for farmers in the parish.
“There are a number of programmes and projects to increase their production and productivity, and the management of the parish has stepped up the training for the farmers so that they can do well in their production,” Mr. Worghs told JIS News in an interview on Friday (September 24).
Singling out projects such as the Financial Access to Responsible Members (FARM) programme, as well as others being assisted by the Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO), Mr. Worghs said that they were all doing well in the parish.
“We have a number of FAO assisted programmes in the parish. There is a root crop programme, where 30 farmers will be given inputs to plant half acre each of irish potatoes. They will be given seeds, fertilisers and training,” he explained.
“We also have assistance for 13 farmers to grow yams at a half acre each, and these farmers will be given the yam heads and fertilisers,” he said, adding that the project should also see a set of farmers getting assistance for the planting of cocoa.
He added that a home gardening programme would also come on stream soon, to assist women in the establishing back yard gardens.
“We are going to be setting up three demonstration plots for the ladies. They can always go for training on these plots and see how they can set up good back yard gardens,” he said.
He appealed to farmers across the parish to continue to support RADA’s efforts, and to attend the training sessions being organised to assist them.
One farmer, Lloyd Ebanks, told JIS News that he was happy with the projects RADA and the Ministry of Agriculture have in place to help farmers in the parish.
He described the FARM Programme as “wonderful”, and said that, although he suffered losses due to the drought and bad seeds, he is still registering for the second crop. He encouraged other farmers to join the programme, because of the great help if offers.
Farmer Ewan Brown agreed and thanked RADA for being a strong force behind farmers in St. Ann.
“I appreciate what RADA is doing for us as farmers because, at times when self-help is hard, I get help from RADA and I respect and appreciate the help that I get from them,” Mr. Brown said.