• JIS News

    Story Highlights

    • Several plant health clinics are to be established across the island, as the Government ramps up efforts to address the issue of pests and diseases affecting crops.
    • The initiative comes under the newly launched Plantwise, which is being co-ordinated by the Commonwealth Agricultural Bureaux International (CABI).
    • Jamaica is the 49th country to benefit from Plantwise, which is a global programme aimed at removing constraints to agricultural productivity through increased access to information and effective delivery of national advisory services.

    Several plant health clinics are to be established across the island, as the Government ramps up efforts to address the issue of pests and diseases affecting crops.

    The initiative comes under the newly launched Plantwise, which is being co-ordinated by the Commonwealth Agricultural Bureaux International (CABI).

    Twenty plant doctors are to be trained in the management of the clinics and to provide service to farmers.

    The plant doctors will be assigned to two agro parks as part of the pilot phase for the implementation of Plantwise. They are expected to receive training by the end of the first quarter of the upcoming financial year.

    At the launch of the programme on Tuesday (March 24), at the Knutsford Court in New Kingston, State Minister for Agriculture, Labour and Social Security, Hon. Luther Buchanan, said the country welcomed the initiative that will “add value and resilience to agricultural production in Jamaica.”

    “We welcome this particular joint effort with CABI to establish and manage on-farm plant health clinics to diagnose and provide solutions to plant pests and diseases,” he said.

    He noted that the programme is vital, as plant health and the prevention, mitigation and management of plant pests and diseases are critical to achieving the country’s goals for food safety and food security.

    “Given the sensitivity and vulnerability of the agricultural sector and its susceptibility to issues such as climate change and diseases and pests, it is paramount that every step is taken to safeguard plant and animal health which ultimately impact the health of the human population,” he said.

    Jamaica is the 49th country to benefit from Plantwise, which is a global programme aimed at removing constraints to agricultural productivity through increased access to information and effective delivery of national advisory services.

    It also aims to develop a global knowledge bank, bringing together and sharing existing and new information on plant health to support and inform stakeholders in national plant health systems, with long-terms potential for effective global vigilance.

    In addition, it seeks to implement national networks of plant clinics and strengthen national plant health systems to improve agricultural services for farmers.

    CABI is an international not-for-profit organisation that improves people’s lives by providing information and applying scientific expertise to solve problems in agriculture and the environment.

    CABI works to strengthen national plant health systems through developing local capacity to establish and manage sustainable networks of plant clinics, run by trained plant doctors, where farmers can find practical plant health advice.

    Through knowledge sharing and science, CABI helps address issues of global concern such as improving global food security and safeguarding the environment.

    This is done by helping farmers grow more and lose less of what they produce, combating threats to agriculture and the environment from pests and diseases, protecting biodiversity from invasive species, and improving access to agricultural and environmental scientific knowledge.