KINGSTON, Jamaica — Opposition People's National Party's (PNP) Shadow Minister on Agriculture and Rural Development, Dr Fenton Ferguson says the country urgently needs a food security plan as this is essential for the life of our nation.
He said that with that level of imports in Jamaica, which translates to eating directly from the containers and exposes the county's vulnerability to delayed shipment or poor weather outcome, Jamaica needs to implement of a storage policy.
“To augment our storage capacity in the local areas would allow us to stockpile our produce in times of plenty, thereby having sufficient in times of shortage,” he contended.
In tandem with storage, Ferguson said, there must be a grading system that allows the country to maintain standards for export, local consumption and production of value added products.
The Opposition spokesman explained that a grading system that would store the produce based on grade and rewards farmers based on the quality of their produce, and provides transparency and equity in the system is an imperative.
Ferguson further emphasised that a national food security plan must be based on availability, access, utilisation and stability.