Agriculture and Fisheries Minister, Hon. Floyd Green (right), listens attentively to Acting Chief Executive Officer of the Jamaica Dairy Development Board (JDDB), Everton Parkes (left), at a meeting of the JDDB held at the Ministry’s offices at Hope Gardens in Kingston on September 24. At centre is Project Coordinator in the Projects Unit of the Board, Devon Paul Sayers.
The Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries, through the Jamaica Dairy Development Board (JDDB), is targeting seven agricultural education institutions for increased milk production.
This disclosure was made at a meeting with the JDDB at the Ministry's offices at Hope Gardens in Kingston on Thursday (September 24), where Portfolio Minister, Hon. Floyd Green, urged the Board to use this initiative to attract as many young people as possible to the dairy industry.
“When you set up those first-rate dairy farms in those schools, you will work with them to get other school students in and around the area to visit the farms and talk to them about the business so it will be able to spark a fire in them in relation to dairy production,” he said.
The institutions being targeted are the College of Agriculture, Science and Education in Portland, Ebony Park HEART Academy in Clarendon, Dinthill Technical High in St. Catherine, Knockalva Polytechnic College in Hanover, the Northern Caribbean University in Mandeville and the Munro College and Sydney Pagon Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Academy in St. Elizabeth.
The institutions will play an integral role in moving the island’s average milk production annually of 13.7 million litres to over 30 million litres annually by 2030.
The Minister commended the JDDB for the work done around silage production and encouraged them to further expand its production to treat with times of drought.
Meanwhile, Acting Chief Executive Officer of the JDDB, Everton Parkes, in accepting the Minister’s charge, said the plan will be to provide the schools with fodder banks and additional pastures and animals for milking.
“This will allow for more animals in the industry for milking, which will lead to increased production. We are also linking students with technology so that they can start to think of creative ways to increase the production process. This is an investment in the future,” he said.
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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.
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