Jamaica’s Big Hopes for Bananas

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Above: a banana plant (CJ Photo)

By the Caribbean Journal staff

Jamaica has big hopes for the island’s banana industry.

Jamaica Agriculture Minister Derrick Kellier said this week that “major developments” would be taking place shortly in the industry, with an emphasis on production for export.

“I can report very good news,” said Kellier, who was on a visit to the United Kingdom. “Coming out of our trip to England there are expressions of interest from three major importers of bananas, ripe and green, to which we have started to respond.”

The Minister said the Caribbean island’s government was placing emphasis on getting more “idle” lands into banana production, with an initial target of 381 hectares of land.

“We will provide input assistance through the All Island Banana Growers Association (AIBGA) from a special credit scheme,” he said. “The Banana Board will be intensifying its programme geared towards training farmers to increase their trace-ability and certification standards in the 2015/16 fiscal year.”

“We urge farmers to be a part of this development and to work with us to ensure that we have the productive capacity and the output to serve these markets that are emerging,” he said.

 

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