Federal Minister responsible for Agriculture, the Honourable Alexis Jeffers talks to a farmer.

BASSETERRE, St. Kitts — There is an urgent need for agricultural reform to expand the sector’s contribution to the Federation’s development trajectory, according to St. Kitts and Nevis’ Federal Minister responsible for Agriculture, the Honourable Alexis Jeffers.

St. Kitts and Nevis’ Federal Minister responsible for Agriculture, the Honourable Alexis Jeffers highlights activities planned for World Food Day.

Hon. Jeffers made the point during a national address on October 10 marking the launch of local activities to commemorate the annual International World Food Day. World Food Day is observed on October 16. This year’s theme is, “Grow, Nourish, Sustain. Together. Our Actions are our Future.”

Minister Jeffers said that agriculture can be the key to creating equitable and sustainable growth as it generates jobs within communities. He said it is also essential to satisfying the nutritional needs of the population.

“No large country has ever achieved significant growth without modernizing its agricultural sector,” Jeffers stated. “While there has been some progress in modernizing agriculture in our Federation, we have not yet reached our full potential. To achieve this potential, we must do agriculture differently, from how we develop policy at the national level, to how we allocate resources in our farming households.”

The minister noted that an in-depth review of data is necessary with best practices being adapted to local realities.

“We ought then to seek to embrace and implement new policies and programmes to transform our agriculture sector, drive 100 percent food and nutrition security, and ensure food is available, accessible, safe, secure, and affordable,” he said.

The minister’s full address can be viewed on-demand on SKNIS social media platforms.

The local activities celebrating World Food Day include:
• October 11, a church service;
• October 12, Seeds and Seedlings Presentation;
• October 14, Re-opening and Launch of Bayford’s Livestock Centre of Excellence,
• October 15, Food Heroes Prize Giving Ceremony, a Farmers’ Market, and Seafood Festival; and
• October 16, A Farmers’ Market as well as a Seafood Festival; and
• October 17, Health Walk.