Addressing the official opening of the Denbigh Agricultural, Industrial and Food Show on August 5, Mr. Samuda noted that the industry should be tapped in order to restore the “40 million litres of liquid milk that we produced as far back as the mid-1980s and early 1990s”.
He informed that, currently, Jamaica produces “but a fraction of that”, satisfying only 12 per cent of the country’s total demand for milk.
Mr. Samuda said the country must use “whatever means possible to introduce quality animals to restore outputs, for the country to be more self-sufficient in the dairy industry”.
“The dairy industry not only satisfies our need for milk, but it also satisfies our need for agro-industrial products,” he added.
The Minister hailed some private-sector companies for their investment in the dairy industry as well as the cattle industry in general.
Notable companies include the Caribbean Broilers Group (through Nutramix), Seprod Limited (through Serge Island), Newport Fersan Jamaica Limited and the Jamaica Dairy Development Board, which have come together to increase the production and consumption of Jamaican milk over the next 10 years.
These players also aim to overhaul the industry by introducing fundamentally different approaches to farming, processing and retailing.
This is to be done through the introduction of new and improved technology, farm-management practices and new pasture-management programmes.
Earlier this year, Mr. Samuda said the Government is targeting a revival of Jamaica’s dairy industry, and urged greater utilisation of technology by farmers to improve production.
- Countries: Jamaica