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  • The Ministry of Agriculture, Labour and Social Security is in the process of upgrading the dairy programmes at agricultural education institutions across the country.
  • A total of $30.5 million has been allocated for the initiative, which is being undertaken through the Jamaica Dairy Development Board (JDDB).
  • Institutions to benefit are the College of Agriculture, Science and Education (CASE) in Portland; Ebony Park HEART Academy, Clarendon; Sydney Pagon Agricultural School, St. Elizabeth; and Knockalva.

The Ministry of Agriculture, Labour and Social Security is in the process of upgrading the dairy programmes at agricultural education institutions across the country.

A total of $30.5 million has been allocated for the initiative, which is being undertaken through the Jamaica Dairy Development Board (JDDB).

“The Ministry recognises that our agricultural education institutions must be centres of (excellence) if we are to have a cadre of professionals that we can dispatch as entrepreneurs and technical personnel,” said State Minister in the Ministry, Hon. Luther Buchanan.

He was addressing the Knockalva Agricultural School’s 75th Anniversary Expo held on June 10, at the institution’s campus in Hanover.

Institutions to benefit are the College of Agriculture, Science and Education (CASE) in Portland; Ebony Park HEART Academy, Clarendon; Sydney Pagon Agricultural School, St. Elizabeth; and Knockalva.

Some 100 heifers will be distributed to the targeted institutions through the JDDB’s Heifer Redeployment Programme. In addition, the dairy units at the schools are being revamped “to have them function as centres for best practices in dairy production.”

CASE is already benefitting from the programme through the transformation of its tutorial farm and the granting of scholarships valued at $18 million.

“Over the periods 2015/2016 and 2017/2018, the needs of the dairy units at the remaining institutions, including Knockalva, will be addressed,” Mr. Buchanan informed.

Activities for the week-long 75th anniversary celebrations at Knockalva Agricultural School included: a campus service; an award and fundraising banquet; and a past students’ reunion.