Farmers in sections of South St. Elizabeth, South Manchester and parts of St. Ann who were recently affected by heavy rains are to benefit from a $63-million support package from the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Mining.
Portfolio Minister, Hon. Floyd Green, who toured some of the affected areas last week, made the announcement today (June 21).
Speaking at the launch of the 69th staging of the Denbigh Agricultural, Industrial and Food Show at Hi-Pro supercentre in St. Catherine, Mr. Green outlined that the sum will be allocated for various purposes.
He said that $15 million is to be put towards restoring damaged crops and “trying to get our farmers planting again”, while another $5 million will be put towards those farmers who need support with their livestock.
“We did see a lot of dislocation in relation to irrigation, and as such, we want to put $10 million to help to purchase some of the equipment that was lost,” Mr. Green outlined.
In addition, $3 million will go towards the purchase of mulch and $30 million will be extended in immediate support to rehabilitate farm roads.
Pointing out that the agricultural sector is “susceptible to the ravages of our climate”, Mr. Green lamented that the country had moved from an intense period of prolonged drought to sharp bursts of intense rainfall.
“That has caused tremendous damage for farmers [and] significant dislocation. A number of farmers lost crop lines, and a lot of challenges [were experienced],” he explained.
“I had committed to the farmers upon seeing the disruption that we will be providing some support to help them rebuild and so I’m pleased to announce [this support package] to help get our farmers back on their feet,” the Minister added.