NIA CHARLESTOWN NEVIS (October 19, 2021)- – Mr. Leroy Thompson and Mr. Lorne Hanley have been awarded Livestock and Crop Farmer for 2019/2020, respectively.
During a recent ceremony, the farmers were saluted for their contribution to the agriculture sector through their output in the areas of meat and produce production. In addition to a commemorative plaque, Mr. Thompson was awarded medication valued at $300 from the Veterinary Division, veterinary services valued at $150, and five bags of general purpose feeds from the Supply Office. Mr. Hanley received one acre of land preparation, five trays of seedlings, two bags of NPK fertilizer and one bag of urea.
Also acknowledged for her contribution to the sector was Elmina Webbe, who was awarded Backyard Farmer for 2019/20. She received four trays of cabbage seedlings, $120 worth of seeds, one quarter acre of land preparation and one bag of NPK fertilizer.
Mr. Donald Daniel was awarded Farmer with the Most Throughput at the Marketing Division for 2020, receiving one acre of land preparation, seeds valued at $200, one bag of Urea and two bags of NPK. Mrs. Avonelle Warner was awarded Farmer with the Most Throughput at the Abattoir for 2020. She received Medication and veterinary services valued at $200 from the Veterinary Division, $200 exemption from slaughtering fees, and four bags of general purpose feeds from the Supply Office.
Deputy Premier Hon. Alexis Jeffers, Minister of Agriculture in the Nevis Island Administration (NIA) distributed the awards. He explained that due to the COVID-19 pandemic, over the past two years the Ministry had been unable to host its annual Agriculture Open Day where stakeholders would be honored.
He saluted the effort exerted not only by those recognized at the ceremony but all farmers across Nevis, in spite of the many challenges including the pandemic.
“You are the persons we depend on- livestock farmers, crop farmers- we recognize all of you for your contribution to the agricultural sector and its overall development and growth over the years. I’ve always been a firm believer that agriculture doesn’t need us, we need agriculture…and as persons who are involved in agriculture it is our effort that would certainly ensure that this sector succeeds.
“The pandemic has certainly given us some challenges and has certainly derailed some of the plans and programs we would have had in agriculture…but in spite of it all we can still speak of some glowing reports in terms of our production here on the island. I want us to continue to support our farmers. They are our stakeholders and they are the ones who we depend on to ensure that we get to that level and that plateau that we have always envisaged [for agriculture],” he said.
Also present at the ceremony were Mr. Randy Elliott, Director of Agriculture; chairperson of the event, Mr. Huey Sargeant, Permanent Secretary; and staff from the various divisions in the Ministry of Agriculture.
The award ceremony formed part of the activities in observance of World Food Day 2021, celebrated under the theme, “Our Actions are Our Future – Better production, better nutrition, a better environment and a better life”.