The Ministry of Agriculture of Saint Lucia, along with the Republic of China (Taiwan), has embarked on a project which seeks to reduce the country’s food import bill. This production and distribution enhancement project will focus on seven crops over a three-year period.
With an annual food import bill of $4.5 million, Saint Lucia with the help of the Government of Taiwan will seek to enhance agricultural intelligence information systems, analyze market demand, and assist farmers plan production cycles based on market demands.
H.E. Ambassador Douglas Chen said the biggest challenge facing Saint Lucia today is how to achieve food security and combat climate change: “We all know that Saint Lucia spends a tremendous amount of money to import fruits and vegetables—Including lettuce, watermelon, cantaloupe and tomatoes from overseas,” Ambassador Chen said. “The import value is increasing every year. The Taiwanese government is willing to work with the Government of Saint Lucia to reverse this trend and promote local protection of seven crops, on a sustainable basis.”
Stlucianewsonline.com reports how Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries, Physical Planning, Natural Resources and Co-operatives, Ezechiel Joseph said the introduction of new technologies and techniques helps Saint Lucia produce these crops more sustainably.