Government working to reduce product prices for farmers but they must be better organized – Agriculture Minister

For the year 2022, the Ministry of Blue and Green Economy, Agriculture, National Food Security plans on interacting and assisting farmers across districts.

Minister in that ministry, Fidel Grant said works have already started as they continued their visits to Morne Prosper and Giraudel on Thursday.

Grant said it is always interesting to visit and interact with farmers who he believes are doing well in Dominica. He noted there is a lot of money to be made in agriculture and applauded the farmers “who continue to work and provide citizens with fresh fruits, vegetables and livestock.”

“We will be out during the year 2022. We will be continuing visiting the farmers in the field. We’ll also be having meetings with them to hear their concerns and of course, we encourage farmers to treat faming as a business. That is the only way that you would be able to see the returns on your investment,” the minister said.

“I would like to applaud the farmers that we met today who had their records and it was just very rewarding to see that these farmers have records for the entire 2021 as to what and who they sell to and the amount of money they made,” he stated. “They were encouraged by seeing the figures and I was even more encouraged knowing that they have these figures.”

He also noted the challenges of the farmers such as labor and with Covid-19, the increase in the price of feed, fertilizer and agro-chemicals.

Grant said the government is working with the relevant authorities to see how they could reduce the prices and are speaking with customs, the minister for finance to see what can be done to ensure  reduction in the prices of the chemicals and fertilizer.

“We know if these prices continue to rise, obviously they’re going to be reflected in our price of food, and then that could mean trouble for our food on our table,” he remarked.

He said he was happy to see how farmers kept their fields and pleased that they have been seeing their extension officers.

“They were very familiar with the extension officers and you could see that there was a personal relationship. I would just like to applaud the work of the extension officers within the south region,” Grant said. “Also, we’d like to state that the farmers also express gratitude to the government for the assistance that they have been receiving through the agricultural livelihoods project in terms of their fertilizer, feed and the repairing of pent.”

Grant also said that efforts are ongoing` within the ministry of agriculture to provide direct support to farmers but he also believes that farmers need to be better organized.

 “We also note that there is a break down between the farmer and the market. Farmers need to become more organized. They need to create themselves into cooperatives, associations groups, whatever it is, that would bring them together so that they have one common voice and one link to the markets,” he suggested.

According to the minister, based on feedback from supermarkets, business owners cannot get enough produce and do not know where to source it and as such, links between the farmers, supermarkets and the open markets need to be improved.

“We also heard of concerns as to the rising price of food on the market in terms of the price the farmers charge to the consumers because the farmers themselves are consumers and they have realized that the price that they are paying for food that they do not produce is increasing,” Grant said adding that this is a concern which his ministry is dealing with.

 

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9 Comments

  1. The Eyes have it
    February 13, 2022

    Does Grant know what he is saying? Is he saying that ” government “ minus the Finance minister, who is PM Skerrit is trying to assist farmers but they (government) trying to convince the Finance minister to get onboard? Well Mr Grant no matter how you try to polish is we got the message. One think government without the Finance minister is really not government. Our government is ONE man and the rest of you all are nothing but spectators, clappers and hopeful wishers. So don’t full yourself sir because we already got the point

  2. My little take
    February 12, 2022

    “Grant said the government is working with the relevant authorities to see how they could reduce the prices and are speaking with customs, the minister for finance to see what can be done to ensure reduction in the prices of the chemicals and fertilizer”.

    Seems like when its convenient Grant is even confused about who is government.

    In the above paragraph Grant said ” The government is working is working with relevant authorities…” however, in the same paragraph he seems to be suggesting that customs and the minister of finance are not part of the government
    Mr Grant stop confusing yourself and stop trying to fool the people of Dominica. The minister of finance is Prime minister
    So how could government be trying to see what the minister of Finance do to help farmers?
    Mr. Grant are you confirming that the government is one man and that one man is not concerned about farmers? I would understand if customs and finance minister were privately owned. But head of…

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 1
  3. Ibo France
    February 12, 2022

    Fidel Grant, going to visit farms and dressed for church or a high profile, business meeting..

    Agriculture,which was once the backbone of the economy is now struggling to stay afloat. Many farmers were able to build their own houses, send off their children to colleges and universities and provide adequately for their families. Today, under Skerrit’s stewardship, farmers have been reduced to beggars and worshippers of an infidel.

    Mr. Grant, those photo-ops are only subterfuge for the harsh reality farmers have to face. You and your colleagues have reduced Dominica from a breadbasket to a basket case. This mishandling of the once most vibrant and productive sector of the economy can now be fittingly described as economic sacrilege.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0
  4. Ibo France
    February 12, 2022

    Fidel Grant is a quick learner. Just like Skerrit, his words and his actions are incongruous, they just don’t match.

    Let’s not be swayed by their sweet lies. Skerrit and his autocracy have butchered the ECONOMY; devastated AGRICULTURE; annihilated AGRO-PROCESSING; stubbornly refused to build FEEDER ROADS; disallowed farmers a STIMULUS PACKAGE during the shutdown; failed to use CBI billions to subsidize FARMERS.

    The citizens want ACTION not more BROKEN PROMISES. Can any sensible person trust this deceitful regime after this lousy performance? Here’s their tenure thus far:
    *massacred agriculture
    *decimated the Middle Class
    *impoverished tens of thousands of citizens
    *permanently wiped out small, local businesses from the landscape of Dominica while allowing Chinese businesses to propagate everywhere in Dominica

    Agriculture, agro-processing, small,local businesses would only thrive again once the Saboteur-in-Chief is cancelled from the political landscape of Dominica.

    • lmckoy
      February 14, 2022

      You have made some strong, unsupported statements. It would have helpful if you had provided evidence to support your claims. For example, the agricultural output for the past five years.

  5. Ibo France
    February 12, 2022

    Look who’s is talking about Food Security, Fidel ‘ Bulldozer’ Grant. He strongly defended the destruction of well over two thousand (2 000) plantain trees in full bloom. He has no moral authority to speak about food security after taking action to create food insecurity.

    Where else in the Caribbean, especially in these times of grave uncertainty, has a government bulldozed or destroyed food crops? This is shockingly unbelievable. These extreme events only happen in countries headed by soulless, totalitarian Tyrants.

    This once beloved, respected gentleman (Fidel Grant) has sold his soul to Satan for thirty pieces of silver. Everybody has a price and Fidel’s price was for a seat in parliament which should be appropriately renamed as the House of Lunacy.

  6. February 12, 2022

    Grant don’t fool the farmers by just visiting them in the field. Go out there and get consistent marketing for the farmers of Dominica. Go, not on the field but on the regional and international arena and obtain market that these farmers can have a consistent weekly export of their produce and obtain a reasonable income. No, they are not doing well. You go out there and sweet talk them and as naive as they are, they buy into your sweet con artist talk and stylish pose, and you leave them sweating. You so call minsters have a lot of questions to answer.

  7. Jey Jey
    February 11, 2022

    That’s a good campaign strategy. Many foreign and undocumented farmers will be bought and placed on the voting list; if there is any such thing. Conman busy at work and starting early. Wake up Opposition!!!

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0
  8. Jey Jey
    February 11, 2022

    The cancer rate in Dominica is very high. Therefore, it’s not safe to the public who buy products from these farmers who are not taught how to use these chemicals and fertilizer. They need not throw fertilizer indiscriminately to the soil to hasten production. Fertilizer must be measured and applied/spread in relation to the specific plant/herb. Most farmers are not aware of this very vital farming methods and no one is relating such information to them. How about organic products? Are farmers interested in growing such foods? Do we find organic foods in the market? Let’s cut back on chemically grown products and feed our people with the best. List the names of the chemicals you use in growing your foods to give us an idea of what we eat. We’ll also tell you how to use it safely for yourself and the consumers.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

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