Government is pushing ahead with plans to take full advantage of the Coffee Sector in Dominica.
Coffee, as a crop, has played an important role in the agricultural sector of Dominica.
Speaking at a Coffee Consultation held earlier this week at the Prevo Cinemall, Technical Specialist for the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (ICCA) in Dominica, Kent Coipel, said just over two years ago, the ministry requested support from ICCA to strengthen the coffee sub-sector.
“The first phase was achieved under a rapid response programme whereby 3 technicians came in to undertake an assessment of the coffee sub-sector in Dominica, looking at the policy environment, looking at the existing production systems, looking at the opportunities as it is for Dominica as it relates to coffee,” Coipel said.
According to Coipel, based on their findings, some recommendations were provided as to how the coffee sub-sector should be advanced.
He said a study tour was also supported where technicians of the Ministry were able to go to Jamaica to understudy the Blue Mountain Coffee and the Highland Coffee in Jamaica.
Coipel said based on those visits and in addition to the recommendations provided by the team, “we are now in the juncture where we are looking at a work plan or a development plan as it relates to how we move forward with the coffee sub-sector in Dominica.”
Meantime, Director of Agriculture, Ricky Brumant, spoke of a project now that looks at development of tree crops Post-Maria.
“We have coffee and cocoa, citrus and avocado, coconuts and the exotics listed under that project,” he stated. “We are just setting the foundation to look at wider development agenda on those chosen commodities.”
Brumant continued, “Already we have had a number of varieties that we brought in from Central America and we have already set them in, looking at how best we can validate those varieties outside of what we have existing already.”
He said five varieties which were actually set out in Pond Casse were brought in.
“I mean the conditions have to be relevant to where they really came from and so that is what we have done so far,” Brumant noted. “I think we have received 15 Kilograms (Kg) of those varieties and so we are looking forward to working with the farmers, particularly in the West Coast to put those in.”