GG Urges Greater Youth Involvement in Agriculture

Governor-General, His Excellency the Most Hon. Professor Sir Kenneth Hall, has called for greater efforts at involving the country’s young people in agriculture.

Sir Kenneth, who spoke at the 2008 Denbigh Agricultural and Industrial Show over the weekend, said that in order for food production to be increased to the level where Jamaica is able to feed itself, farming must be deemed rewarding and attractive by young people.

“The time has come for farming not to be seen purely as an occupation for those who have been in it for over 50 years. We therefore need to redouble our efforts and extend farming and agricultural education in all our educational institutions, as well as to urban and rural youths (who are) out of school,” the Governor-General stressed.

He added that with the work of stakeholder organisations tailored towards promoting agriculture, along with the latest technologies available, young people can spearhead greater agricultural outputs.

“We must (be) determined to engage our youths in becoming farmers. Through the work of organisations like the 4H Clubs, and with the application of new technologies, they can surpass the production (levels) of the present and previous generations”, Sir Kenneth said.

Meanwhile, co-Chairman of the 4H Clubs’ Youth in Agriculture Committee, Clinton Brown, told JIS News that his organisation has stepped up its drive to increase membership in the 4H Clubs. He disclosed that some 215 clubbites from across the island, participated in this year’s Denbigh show.

“We have units in most of our schools, and we are now engaging communities through churches and others groups, to build agriculture by the country’s youths, and technology is playing a great role in this regard; young people are excited about agri-processing. To mobilize over 200 young people, who came out for three days and played leading roles in things agricultural, is a good sign for the future,” Mr. Brown informed.