Jamaica News: Farmers in Bingham Hill and surrounding communities in St. Ann will now find it easier to get to their fields and transport their goods to market following the rehabilitation of the farm road in the area.
The upgrade of the roadway forms part of ongoing farm road improvements in the parish, where approximately $42 million have been spent over the past two financial years to benefit some 1,800 farmers.
“With 23,188 registered farmers in the parish of St. Ann contributing 1,500 hectares of domestic food crops and 45 acres of protected agriculture, farmers are encouraged to increase production based on these extensive road networks,” said Former Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries, Hon. J.C. Hutchinson.
He was speaking at the official opening of the roadway on Thursday (July 16).
Mr. Hutchinson encouraged the farmers to “use this [road] as an impetus to produce more to feed the nation and improve your individual livelihoods”.
He informed that for the 2020/2021 financial year, Government has allocated a total of $525 million for the rehabilitation of 56 farm roads across the country.
He said that 77 farm roads were rehabilitated at a cost of $561 million for the 2019/2020 financial year.
For his part, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Rural Agricultural Development Authority (RADA), Peter Thompson, said the rehabilitated Bingham Hill farm road will help to increase farming activities in the area.
“I just want to commend the RADA team and all the other stakeholders who made this possible. This road is very strategic to us, as it runs through several communities,” he said.
He pointed out that despite the threat of the coronavirus (COVID-19 pandemic), the agricultural sector managed to grow by 7.8 per cent.
“When agriculture grows, the economy will grow,” he noted.
Source: JIS News