The government, realizing the role that agriculture could play in efforts to overcome poverty, has been giving due attention to short and long term development plans set for the sector.
This plan aimed at boosting agricultural productivity, sustaining nations' food security, substituting imports, maximizing exports, is expected to take the nation out of the vicious circle of poverty.
The Ministry of Agriculture is now in the process of procuring a consignment of fertilizer and other inputs required for use by banana farmers.
Agriculture Minister Hon. Matthew Walter told GIS new recently that increasing farmer’s productivity is a key priority for his Ministry.
‘’If the necessary nutrients are not given to the plant, it is evident that the plant will not be able to produce satisfactorily with respect to productivity. Productivity is a key factor and in order for us to achieve productivity we must be able to provide farmers with the fertilizers that will boost production and productivity.”
The presence of the Black Sigatoka disease on the island has affected farmer’s productivity in some parts of the country.
During a recent tour of affected banana farms in the North and North Eastern regions of the island, the Agriculture Minister had the opportunity to interact with several farmers who requested Government’s assistance in boosting farm productivity.
The Minister gave farmers the assurance that Government will provide the necessary assistance in getting their farms back to productivity.
“I gave them the sense of comfort in relation to Government’s intention to procure the fertilizer and to begin to distribute fertilizer to all farmers but paying specific areas to the infested areas”.
The Agriculture Minister also gave Government’s commitment to rehabilitating a number of the islands feeder roads where farmers have been identified to be most productive.