Sun | May 26, 2019

Letter of the Day | Let’s recommit to eating locally grown food

Published:Tuesday | November 20, 2018 | 12:07 AM


Good news. Spanish hoteliers and investors have recommitted to buying more local goods and services. Certainly welcome news in the farming sector, which continues to be negatively impacted by substantial importation of agricultural products.

This impact of foreign foods in the Jamaican market is made greater given that the farmer's strength is not in the marketing of farm produce. Consequently, large volumes of imports is the primary threat to farm viability. Farmers who have had to cut back on production due to existing market challenges can even be further encouraged by a similar recommit of local hoteliers towards buying more locally grown food.

One area of particular concern is the pig/pork industry, which is cyclically threatened by "oversupply" of pork in the market. This market excess is not due to local farm production, but, furtive importation of fresh and processed products.

Like the Spanish hoteliers and investors, Jamaicans too can help the viability of the local agricultural sector by making the "Eat What We Grow" campaign more than a catchy commercial but, in actuality, eating more local produce.

Claude Wilson