The agriculture sector can be the engine for the development of the economy.
So said Acting Chief Agricultural Officer, Ralph Farnum, who was speaking at the Agrofest 2013 Awards Ceremony, at the Divi Southwinds Beach Resort recently.
Pointing out that as a small economy Barbados had to depend on imports to feed its citizens, Farnum asserted that it was time for that practice to become a “thing of the past”.
“We, as a small open economy, are at the whims and mercies of others… We need to step up to the plate, get our act together, and try and feed ourselves with what little resources we have so that we are not totally dependant on others.
“We lose a lot of foreign exchange because the persons who come from outside, they eat things that are coming from outside We need to move towards a situation where the majority of things that they eat as much as possible are from Barbados,” he maintained.
The Acting Chief Agricultural Officer lauded the Barbados Agricultural Society for the successful staging of Agrofest 2013, and highlighted the significance of the annual event to the development of the sector.
“The continued hosting of Agrofest speaks today to the desire of us all, not only to advance the cause of agriculture as a viable platform for agricultural development, but to promote interest in the development and the linkage of the sector to other sectors of the economy, so that it can truly benefit the economy,” he stated.
Farnum also alluded to this year’s theme: Renewable Energy — Leading the charge into the future and noted that it was very relevant, and was an area that needed to be further developed.
In the Eastern Caribbean Fertiliser’s Competition, Gordon Walters Primary took first place in the School Garden Competition, while first prize in the Home Owners Garden went to Marcia Springer.
Barry Bishop took first and second place in the category Holstein Heifer under one year; first place for the Holstein Heifer Under two years, first place Jersey heifer under one year, first and second place Jersey heifer under two years, Best Holstein Heifer, Best Jersey heifer and Best Heifer on Show in the Pine Hill’s Dairy Competition.