The Ministry Of Agriculture Refutes Claims That Farm Machinery Equipment Is Kept Away From Farmers

PR – The Ministry of Agriculture and Lands wishes to reiterate that the farm machinery pool, received as part of the 7th Technical Cooperation Agreement between the Government of Grenada and The People’s Republic of China, is used exclusively to increase production in the Agricultural Sector throughout the tri-island State of Grenada. 

During the opening ceremony of the 2020 Plant Distribution Season on July 14, 2020, the Hon. Yolande Bain-Horsford handed over the keys for one of the tractors to the sister isles of Carriacou and Petit Martinique, through the Ministry of Carriacou and Petit Martinique Affairs and Local Government and another tractor will be handed over to Her Majesty Prisons in the coming week. 

Prior to this, the Ministry donated some of the implements at Mirabeau to Carriacou and Petit Martinique, to improve the farm mechanization services there. On the mainland, the tractors will be used exclusively to service the propagation stations, estates, the La Sagesse Demonstration Farm and CARDI. 

Over a year ago, the Ministry discontinued its Farm Mechanization Service at Mirabeau, St. Andrew, after years of complaints from our farmers of not being able to receive adequate tractor or ploughing service. Prior to terminating operations at Mirabeau, the Ministry engaged several private service providers, who welcome the opportunity to provide the service to the farmers. To date, there are six private operators serving the nation’s farmers. 

As part of the Ministry’s thrust to improve food and nutrition security, the decision was taken to donate the tillers to farmers in clusters, with six farmers benefitting from each cluster. These farmers are into the production of staple food crops. The selection of the beneficiaries is complete, and the distribution of the tillers commenced on June 25, 2020, with the first recipient being The Rastafari Organisation for Centralization, in St. Mark. Subsequently, it was discovered 

that a part was missing, which was as a result of an error in the shipment. Therefore, the distribution was placed on hold in anticipation of the arrival of the part, which will be on the island in the coming weeks. 

The Ministry views the claims as rather unfortunate, given its commitment to working with private service providers in providing tractor or ploughing services under the restructured Farm Labour Programme. Presently, beneficiaries of the labour programme, who are devoted to staple food crops production, are being assessed and this phase of the Farm Labour Programme will commence shortly. 

The Ministry of Agriculture and Lands wishes to reiterate its commitment to the full implementation of the National Food Security Mitigation and Response Plan.