Director of Project Management and Coordination in the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries, Leitha Geddes.
The Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries is partnering with the Jamaica Social Invest Fund (JSIF) through Phase II of the Rural Economic Development Initiative to increase the production and productivity of crops and livestock, processing, value addition and marketing.
Addressing a virtual stakeholders’ sensitization forum on September 23, Director of Project Management and Coordination in the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries, Leitha Geddes, said the project aligns with Ministry’s focus of strengthening value chains as well as strengthening the linkages in the tourism sector between producers/ service providers and buyers.
“Through these linkages, we anticipate improved economies of scale for small agricultural and tourism enterprises as well as increased emphasis on climate change,” she said.
Ms Geddes added that this is relevant especially in these unprecedented times when there is a need to strengthen food security and to shore up income generation.
The Project Management Director hailed work done under the first phase of REDI, which began in 2010 and was concluded in 2017, stating that some $1billion was spent on agricultural and agro-industrial projects under this phase.
The project was also successful in expanding irrigation in rural communities through the establishment of rainwater harvesting and drip irrigation systems, which resulted in increased crop production among farmers in those areas.
“JSIF’s piloting of REDI I has helped the country to move closer to achieving its development goal by facilitating the strengthening of supply chain linkages between the agricultural sector and end users in tourism, fast food chains, restaurants and supermarkets,” Ms. Geddes said.
“This must also be the case for REDI II. It must build on the gains of its predecessor and solidify them to give our farmers and other stakeholders of the project a fighting chance at surviving these times and beyond,” she added.
In his remarks, Managing Director of JSIF, Omar Sweeney, said access to grants under REDI II will be through a call for proposal.
“We want to roll out very quickly and efficiently. We want the grants to be best aligned to the things that we’re asking for,” he said.
Applications for grants under the project can be had from the Rural Agricultural Development Authority parish offices, JSIF’s office and website and the Tourism Product Development Company and Social Development Commission offices.
Deadline for submission is November 25.
Under a US$40million loan agreement between the Government and the World Bank, the second REDI project is aimed at enhancing access to markets and climate resilient approaches.
Welcome to the official website of the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries.
The Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries (MICAF) has been charged with the responsibility of driving the integration of the production of primary agricultural produce along all the stages of the supply chain through to value added and facilitating full commercialization of outputs of the agriculture, manufacturing, and service sectors.
We have, therefore, placed much energy and enthusiasm into the development of this website to provide timely information on the Ministry, our agencies and programmes.
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