The proclamation declaring November 25 as “Eat Jamaican” Day, was issued by His Excellency the Most Honourable Sir Patrick Allen on Monday, November 25, in a ceremony at King’s House.
Governor-General Sir Patrick Allen, who is also patron of the event, made brief remarks shortly before declaring “the twenty-fifth day in the month of November annually to be ‘Eat Jamaican’ Day. He urged all citizens to join the Jamaica Agricultural Society in recognizing the farmers of Jamaica and giving thanks for their contribution to the quality of life of our nation.
The Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries, the Hon. Roger Clarke said that the Agriculture Industry has rebounded after facing six major natural disasters between 1999 and 2003.
According to the Minister, in 2013, despite the setbacks, a significant portion of food items are supplied locally. He, however, lamented that the country’s import bill is still unacceptable at US$1Billion.
” …placing focus on increasing local food production and consumption cannot only be relegated to times of crisis, but must become a way of life for Jamaicans at all times and in all seasons,” said the Minister.
Food and cultural performances were some of the elements that contributed to the success of this 10th Anniversary Celebration. Its significance was reinforced by the numerous local booths established on the grounds of King’s House and most importantly, the huge number of patrons who turned up to view, taste and support ‘Brand Jamaica’.
Their Excellencies the Most Honourable Sir Patrick Allen and the Most Honourable Lady Allen, accompanied by JAS President Senator Norman Grant, visited the various booths. Each had on display, items manufactured locally and available for purchase, including by-products such as ‘breadfruit porridge mix’ and an array of other food items.
Cultural dances, singing of folk songs and a cook-off competition were some of the activities that took place on the day.