St. Kitts and Nevis (WINN): IICA’s Technical Specialist, St. Kitts and Nevis, Ms. Sharon Jones told participants, receiving training at the introduction of the rabbit rearing project, that each would receive two rabbits -a male and female at the end of the exercise.
” …you will leave here with a good start – a pair of rabbits, which you are expected to look after, to care for …I am told that a female rabbit or doe can have as much as 3-4 litters per year of about six to eight animals per litter. So this is just the start of your journey, ” she said at the Department of Agriculture Conference Room in La Guerite where 33 farmers were presented with a pair of rabbits.
” I am told on the French islands of Martinique, Guadeloupe and St. Martin, one pound of meat sells at US$25,” observed Ms. Jones. “So it is a very good initiative to go into it as an industry. With these stocks, I hope each and every one of us considers it not just as a way of supplementing food but also investing it as a start-up to a very viable venture.”
The initiative came out of IICA’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic in CARICOM and aims to provide a local source of animal protein, according to Ms. Jones.
Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Marine Resources the Hon Alexis Jeffers told the farmers that rabbit meat was very healthy, nutritious, low in fat, and low in cholesterol.
The Department of Agriculture on St. Kitts accepted the offer to assist with rabbit rearing to help households on the island.
However, Nevis opted for ‘backyard gardening’.
IICA is expected to provide ten participating households with a raised seedbed that will help to keep out predators, as householders have been losing crops, fruits and vegetables to animals especially monkeys and donkeys.
The initiative will be launched next week, according to the ministry of agriculture.