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JIS News

More than 100 receipt books have so far been distributed to farmers in Portland, as the Ministry of Agriculture and the Jamaica Agricultural Society (JAS) step up efforts to reduce praedial larceny . In a JIS News interview Parish Manager for the Portland branch of the JAS, Thelma Williams, said the distribution was being carefully conducted to ensure that only bona fide farmers were presented with the books. This she said was in order to prevent unscrupulous persons from having them in their possession. The issuing of receipts to certify the legitimate sale of agricultural produce by farmers is one of the measures being implemented to stem the tide of livestock theft, which has wreaked havoc on farming communities for years.
The distribution of the receipt books follows a farmer registration programme conducted by the Rural Agricultural Development Authority (RADA), for the purpose of producing important data on the members of the farming community and the operation of the agricultural sector.
The distribution began in May of this year and the books are sold to farmers at a cost of $500 each. However, farmers not in possession of their personal identification number will not be allowed to make purchases. Miss Williams pointed out that the JAS was making every effort to ensure that farmers who do not have personal identification numbers were provided with these as early as possible. Noting that the farmers of the parish were giving full cooperation to the initiative, Miss Williams exhorted those members of the Portland farming community who were not yet registered with RADA, to do so as early as possible to be officially recorded as farmers, and receive their receipt books.
Miss Williams acknowledged that praedial larceny was still a big problem in Portland, and expressed confidence that the island wide use of the receipt book system would enable the farmers of the parish to significantly reduce these occurrences.