An example of agricultural produce on display at the market.

BASSETERRE, St. Kitts – St. Kitts and Nevis has delivered well to farmers and fisherfolk, and will continue to support them under the Farmers and Fisherfolk Assistance Programme, according to the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Marine Resources, Ron Collins.

“Farmers and Fishers have benefited greatly from the stimulus package provided by the government in 2020,” said Collins during remarks on the development of the agricultural and fisheries sectors. “The 2020 stimulus package aided farmers and fishers by greatly reducing prices on seeds, feed, and seedlings. He said the government also made land, wire, and other building materials available.

“The government has provided support by assigning STEP workers to farmers and fishers to enhance their operations, land preparations, provision of chemical and fertilizers—repair of paddocks has also been contributed,” he said.

The permanent secretary highlighted the work of the Livestock Unit at the Department of Agriculture, saying that the unit provided free treatment and Bayticol to control and arrest the Dermatophilosis that decimated the livestock in the Federation.

“Our Assistance Programme, made possible by the Federal Government, has made available funds to support the activities in helping farmers overcome some of the challenges they face,” said Collins. “The Federal Government made a further injection of an additional $3 million for 2021 that will serve to ensure that the target of increased production and decreased import bill is achieved.”

“The opportunities in agriculture have increased because of the assistance provided,” he said. “Many of our farmers and fishers can speak to our commitment to helping them in their various farming and fishing endeavours.”