Posted: Thursday, April 21, 2022. 4:43 pm CST.
Photo Credit: MAFSE
By Rubén Morales Iglesias:
The Ministry of Agriculture, Food Security and Enterprise is currently hosting its two-day annual general meeting (AGM) at Ayin-Ha Resort in Lemonal, Belize District.
“The objective of the AGM is to present accomplishments and workplans that will guide the Ministry in its planning, activities, and initiatives,” said the Ministry of Agriculture.
“The workplans outlined the vision of the various departments and partner agencies to promote agriculture locally and to be more export-oriented under the new programmatic framework of vegetable and root crops, grains, traditional crops, and livestock, among others.”
The MAFSE AGM was opened by Minister Jose Abelardo Mai who has been the driving force behind the resurgence of agriculture as a major foreign exchange earner.
MAFSE’s Policy Analyst Milagro Matus said the main agricultural commodities contributed $570 million at the primary level to Belize’s economy.
The biggest earners were grains and legumes that accounted for $128.9 in 2021/22. Bananas brought in $100 million, poultry $99.8 million, sugarcane $89.7 million, livestock $88 million, fruits and vegetables, $42.2, citrus $19 million, shrimp, $1.7 million, and papaya $0.7 million. These are agriculture’s contribution at the primary level but when the added value of processed products such as citrus concentrates and sugar is included, the contribution of agriculture to the economy is much higher.
Presentations were made today on vegetables and root crops, non-traditional fruit crops, grains and legumes, livestock, agro-processing, food security and nutrition, and MAFSE’s extension services and projects.
In its first day, the MAFSE AGM also looked at agriculture related subjects such as climate change and water management, the Research and Development programme in Central Farm, the Cooperatives Department, the Bureau of Standards, Supplies Control, and the Corozal Free Zone.
The MAFSE AGM continues on Friday.
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