May 26, 2017
Fruit production improvements for SVG

The Division of Adult and Continuing Education partners with the National Learning Services of Colombia to advance fruit and cocoa production in SVG.

Government is on a mission to improve cocoa and other fruit production in St Vincent and the Grenadines.

It is being led by the Division of Adult and Continuing Education of the Ministry of Education, National Reconciliation and Ecclesiastical Affairs, in collaboration with the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, Fisheries and Rural Transformation and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, International Trade and Commerce.

The National Learning Services of Columbia, SENA is a primary partner in the venture.

SENA is one of the most important centres of technical and technological education in Latin America. The partnership, which has been forged for over a year, is now on its second leg, following an initial visit by a Vincentian contingent last September.

On Friday, May 19, representatives from SENA concluded a week-long technical visit to St Vincent and the Grenadines to ascertain the current state of the local fruit and cocoa industry, and to provide adequate recommendations on how to improve the production process.

At a media briefing at the Ministry of Agriculture’s conference room, Minister of Agriculture Saboto Caesar said he is pleased with the new initiative that their goals of optimizing the value of commodities produced in St Vincent and the Grenadines

“I would like to take this opportunity to thank the Government and people of Colombia for their assistance to St Vincent and the Grenadines and stakeholders in the agricultural sector, as it pertains to us moving in the direction of value addition,” Caesar said.

“Over the past days the delegation went to speak with several stakeholders in the sector; to farmers and persons in the agricultural sector, from the standpoint of marketing and also production, and they have compiled a comprehensive project that will guide us in the short to medium term, as it pertains to value addition.”

Caesar also commended the Colombian delegation for their commitment to the initiative, noting that “not only did they train us in Colombia, but they have come to St Vincent for a field visit in order to properly assess our landscape, so that they can better informed.”

Through the SENA initiative, a new training programme will be tailored to address deficiencies in the production processes identified by this diagnostic exercise and is expected to be formalized and implemented by August this year.