Agri Ministry, private investor to create swine abattoir at Garden of Eden

The Agriculture Ministry is showing improvement in all aspects, and not only in the rice and sugar sectors, Minister Zulfikar Mustapha has said while on a visit to the Corentyne in Region Six.

Agriculture Minister Zulfikar Mustapha, along with Region Six Chairman David Armogan; President of the Rice Producers Association, Leaka Rambrich, and CEO of the National Drainage and Irrigation Authority, Lionel Wordsworth, at the meeting

According to the Minister, the boom in agriculture is being noticed by leaders of other countries, and Barbados Prime Minister Mia Mottley, who is the Head of Government in the Caricom Quasi-Cabinet with responsibility for the Caricom Single Market and Economy (CSME), has indicated that she needs a project in Guyana. This, the Agriculture Minister said, would entail the cultivation of berries.
“She wants to reduce the cost for food in the Caribbean by producing it right here in Guyana,” he disclosed.
“Guyana”, he said, “has successfully cultivated blue berries,” adding, “we want to have one of the largest hydroponic farms in the Caribbean right here in Guyana. We have had successful indoor trials with our wheat. Within a few days, we will be reaping that wheat at Burma. Now we are working with Brazil, and by the end of September, we would start the open-field trial.”
Some 200 acres will be put under cultivation at Roraima next month.
“The Brazilians are very optimistic that we will be able to plant wheat on a large scale, and if we can do that, it would be a revolution we would be creating in the Caribbean; we will have wheat for local consumption, and also be a net exporter,” he declared.
“We are working with the Brazilians also to do embryo transplants, so that we can improve our cattle industry – both dairy and beef industries. Already, 400 head of cattle have been selected from a farm at Ebini, where the Agriculture Ministry has its farm for embryo transplants. When you do the embryo transplant, you get better genetics and a better breed in a shorter span of time,” he explained.
Artificial insemination is also a part of the programme, farmers were told.

Swine industry
Meanwhile, efforts are being made to develop the swine industry. This will see breeding animals being given to pig farmers.
“When they get the piglets, they will have to give two each to two other farmers, so that we can increase the swine industry. Right now, we are working with a private investor to create a swine abattoir at Garden of Eden, and they will also be setting up a meat processing plant there, to make things like sausage.”
Meanwhile, with funds from the International Development Bank, he said, a similar project will be done at Onverwagt in Region Five (Mahaica/Berbice).
Mustapha, however, called on farmers to ensure that the sector becomes a robust one, producing food for both the local and international markets. (G4)