JIS News

Prime Minister the Hon. Bruce Golding, has emphasised the importance of proper marketing in the agricultural sector, pointing out that only strong marketing strategies will convince farmers that the profession is worthwhile.
Giving the keynote address at the first Production and Marketing Organisation (PMO) conference staged on June 25 by the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries in association with the Rural Agricultural Development Authority (RADA) at the Trelawny Multi-purpose Stadium, the Prime Minister said that a major focus with respect to farming is the development of marketing strategies, to assisting the farmers to benefit from their production.
“It is one thing to help the farmer to produce, but you cannot help him to produce and walk off leaving him at that stage, because too many farmers have wrestled with the frustrations. You work, you produce, you pray to the Almighty that he will give you good weather, you reap your crop, and sometimes you sit down looking at your crop and your crop looking at you, and you cannot help the crop and the crop cannot help you,” he told the thousands of farmers from across the island who attended the conference.
The Prime Minister argued that the agricultural sector has been missing a wheel, which has to do with the post harvesting of crops, which determines if the farmer can make a good living from toiling.
He said that whereas workers in other industries get paid at the end of the week or the month, the farmer has to wait until after harvesting, which can take up to several months, and even after harvesting, the lack of a market can lead to frustration.
Mr. Golding commended the Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries, Hon. Dr. Christopher Tufton and his team, for the emphasis now being placed on marketing within the agricultural sector.
“Marketing involves not just trying to find buyers, it involves improving your product through quality,” he stressed.
The Prime Minister said with the assistance of the Ministry and the farmers’ organisations islandwide, farming in Jamaica will become a profession of choice, just like any other, and it will be beneficial to all who decide to embark on that path in life.
The one-day conference was held under the theme: ‘PMO Farmers Working Together to Feed the Nation’. The farmers in attendance had the opportunity to attend seminars covering several relevant topics, and to view and participate in demonstrations to do with several different crops and farming techniques.

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