JIS News

The Government continues to invest in the future of agriculture, with the recent handover of 20 lease agreements to youth and selected Mango Agro-Park investors.

Facilitated through the Agro-Investment Corporation (AIC), participants will engage in agricultural activities linked to crop production.

Activities will be spread across several agro-parks and agro-economic zones, to include the Ebony Park Agro-Park in Clarendon, Amity Hall Agro Park in St Catherine, and New Pen Agro Production Zone in St Mary, among others.

Agriculture and Fisheries Minister, Hon. Pearnel Charles Jr., said an additional 20 young people will also be awarded leases in short order, amounting to a total of 40.

“It has been recognised that the average age of farmers in Jamaica is 50 years old, and in this context, the AIC as part of its succession planning and sustainability strategy, has sought to ensure that our young people have a place within the agro-parks and production zones,” he said.

Mr. Charles Jr. was speaking at the handover ceremony for the leases on Wednesday, April 27, at the Mango-Agro Park in Toll Gate, Clarendon.

The move aligns with the Ministry’s mandate to ensure that 20 per cent of government-owned lands are offered to young persons18 to 35 years, for agribusiness-related projects.

Meanwhile, the Minister said crops to be cultivated will mainly be cash crops that have significant commercial value, such as sweet peppers, sweet corn, Irish and sweet potatoes.

He also noted that beneficiaries will have extended support from the AIC.

“[Support will come] in the form of land preparation, technical support and market linkages, in partnership with stakeholder agencies, including the Rural Agricultural Development Authority (RADA), the Jamaica 4-H Clubs and the National Irrigation Commission Limited,” he said.

The Agro-Investment Corporation is the agri-business facilitation arm of the Ministry, responsible for stimulating, facilitating and developing agriculture.

Skip to content