JIS News

I am happy to be associated with the observation of Pesticide Awareness Week 2008. Pesticide Awareness Week provides an unrivalled opportunity to inform Jamaicans about the benefits and risks associated with pesticide use, as well as their role in ensuring safe and effective use of these chemicals.
“Food Security in a Healthy Environment” the focus of this year’s celebration is a timely reminder of the global food crisis and the need for swift and decisive action. The theme also draws attention to the importance of environmental preservation in the quest to meet the global food demand.
Jamaica like the rest of the world is experiencing a serious food crisis that necessitates speedy and innovative solutions. We not only need to “grow what we eat” and “eat what we grow” but more importantly grow enough to meet the demands and sustain the health of the population, using methodologies that are environmentally wholesome.
Accessing and properly applying registered pesticides is crucial to Jamaica’s ability to yield better quality and quantity produce, especially for our nutritional needs. Nutrition is a fundamental pillar of human life, health and development and can affect our ability to achieve our local and international health objectives.
Achieving the Millennium Development Goals, especially goal #1 aimed at eradicating extreme poverty and hunger, hinges greatly on our ability to satisfactorily meet our nutritional needs Jamaicans.
On the occasion of Pesticide Awareness Week 2008, I wish to applaud the Pesticide Control Authority for ably regulating and monitoring the use of pesticides in Jamaica. The organization must also be commended for the fundamental role it plays in ensuring that the public is informed and specialized groups such as farmers are properly trained in the use of pesticides. The training of farmers in particular has been helping to reduce the health risks to themselves and the consuming public, as well as minimize environmental damages.
As the watchdog for pesticides use in Jamaica PCA I implore you to keep working assiduously for the cause, paying careful attention to the importance of partnership and innovative approaches in helping Jamaica to achieve “food security in a healthy environment”