Nevis Onion Production Up

Charlestown, Nevis
February 20, 2008

The Department of Agriculture on Nevis announced that it increased its onion cultivation for the 2008 planting season from 7.5 acres in 2007 to nine acres to take advantage of the commodity’s increased world market price.
 
Director of Agriculture Dr. Kelvin Daly on the island told the Department of Information in a recent interview that the Department of Agriculture had toyed with the idea of phasing out onion cultivation in 2007 because it was not cost effective. However, since that year’s harvest, world prices had increased by 100 percent, a decision was taken to increase production.
 
“Since the last crop in 2007 the cost has increased almost 100 percent on the international market it [onion] has become now a more viable product to anything else. So we are increasing the acreage, the price has stabilized around $75-$80 per 50 pound bag and up to last year, it was up to $117 per bag.

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Nevis Island Begins Sea Cotton Harvest

Charlestown, Nevis
February 08, 2008

The first harvest of Sea Island Cotton on Nevis in three years commenced recently as scheduled and Director of Agriculture in the Nevis Island Administration (NIA) Dr. Kelvin Daly said the crop would be ready for processing by mid March with a projected first shipment by April or May.
 
During an interview with the Department of Information on February 08, 2008, Dr. Daly said though the cotton crop was not fully matured, the Department had harvested close to 1,000 pounds with labour from within the Department and small scale assistance from outside.
 
“The harvest areas we are picking from are Port Works and New River. The crop at Indian Castle is not yet ready but it should be ready before the end of this month in February. We expect the full harvest to be ready for processing by the middle of March. Once processed the first shipment should be ready to be shipped by April early May.

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St. Kitts – Nevis Farmers Team Up With Taiwan Technology

Basseterre, St. Kitts – Nevis
February 05, 2008 (CUOPM)

Local farmers in St. Kitts and Nevis are expected to benefit from a new technical cooperation agreement signed between the Government of St. Kitts and Nevis and the Republic of China on Taiwan.

The new agreement will provide for the introduction of new agriculture and fruit crops to the twin-island Federation.

St. Kitts and Nevis’ Minister of Agriculture, Hon. Cedric Liburd said the new agreement will also extend technical assistance to the fishing industry and develop the aqua-culture sector. “This will enrich the diet of our population and also improve food security,” said Liburd, during a signing ceremony at the Ministry of Foreign Affiars in Taipei.

Minister Liburd also said that the agreement will further provide assistance and develop the horticulture industry as well as provide the necessary technical help in conducting a feasibility study to determine the suitability of growing certain exotic food crops in St. Kitts and Nevis.

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St. Kitts Fruit Plate Continues To Do Well

Basseterre, St. Kitts – Nevis
January 30, 2008

The Kittitian Fruit Plate which began as a concept to encourage the production of fruit and find a market for its sale continues to do well.

Marketing Officer of the Department of Agriculture Mr. Alistair Edwards revealed that the idea was that of his Marketing Unit, when it began pushing the production of several goods at the closure of the sugar industry.  The Unit did market research and found that there was an unsatisfied demand for assorted fruit.

He said that whenever the Agriculture Department is invited to an event the representatives make sure to take Kittitian Fruit Plates which can form part of the refreshments for the event.  The Marketing Officer said that farmers bring the fruit to the Department which then puts the various fruit together considering that individual farmers may harvest only one type of fruit.  Edwards noted that several farmers package the fruit plate themselves for sale at their vending stalls.

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St. Kitts Marriott Resort Helps Local Farmers

Basseterre, St. Kitts- Nevis
January 30, 2008

The Department of Agriculture is forging forward in its role of facilitating the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the St. Kitts Marriott Resort and the local farmers of St. Kitts.

In giving background to the MOU, Agriculture Marketing Officer Mr. Alistair Edwards said that negotiations commenced under Director of Agriculture Dr. Jerome Thomas, even before the Marriott was completed.  He explained that select produce had been provided since 2003 but there had been some challenges.  Mr. Edwards sad that when the St. Kitts Marriott came under new management farmers were told that they needed produce insurance as was required by commodity suppliers to Marriott Resorts internationally.  Once this was done, they were able to sign the recent MOU, which Edwards described as a marriage where both parties are committed – one in terms of buying and the other in terms of supplying produce.  The MOU, which was signed Novermber 3, 2007, is the forerunner to an official contract, the draft of which is already circulating to the relevant parties for adjustments.

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