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JIS News

Executive Director of the Jamaica 4-H Clubs, Lenworth Fulton, is encouraging more young people to take up beef and dairy farming.
Mr. Fulton, who spoke to JIS News, at the recent staging of the Minard Livestock Show and Beef Festival in Brown’s Town, St. Ann, noted that with the average beef farmer being older that 60 years, more young people were needed in the sector to ensure its sustainability.
He acknowledged that the “great infrastructure that you will have to put up and the capital that you’ll have to have to do beef cattle and indeed dairy,” served as a discouragement to those wishing to enter the industry, but said that this could be overcome through lease arrangements.
“It is time for lease financing and leasing lands, which would give the farmers who own the land a share, but having new farmers on the land, so that they will be a part of the investment and this is what we are pushing,” Mr. Fulton stated, noting that a young farmer should not have to go and purchase a parcel of land for farming.
“We need to get out of our people’s head that you have to own everything to do business and that is what the Jamaica 4-H Clubs is now doing,” he added.
The Minard show, which was held under the theme: ‘Exploiting Livestock for Food Security and Youth Empowerment,’ attracted thousands of 4-H clubbites from various schools across the island, who participated in a number of agricultural activities, while benefitting from information.
Turning to projects being undertaken by the 4-H Movement, Mr. Fulton told JIS News, that 15 young bee farmers were recently trained and equipped with the necessary tools to undertake their own businesses.
“We are doing the same thing with goat farmers. We have already given goats to 27 young farmers,” he said.
He further informed that peanuts and honey should be on the market within the next couple of weeks, noting that both products will have the Jamaica 4-H brand.