by Linda Straker
Gregory Delsol, Senior Planning Officer Ministry of Agriculture is Grenada’s participant in the 11th Regional Planners Forum on Agriculture which concludes at the Hilton Resort, Barbados on Friday, 15 September 2017.
The Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Secretariat, in collaboration with the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) of the United Nations, convened 2 meetings which opened on Thursday morning.
For this year’s forum, the FAO is partnering with the CARICOM Secretariat to focus on Innovation Systems for Sustainable Agriculture and Rural Development. The objective of the forum is to identify and promote policies and institutional mechanisms that help to strengthen innovation systems for sustainable agriculture and rural development in the Caribbean.
A news release from the organisers said that some of the key considerations in the advancement of public policies and a strategy for adoption of innovations in agriculture that would serve to benefit all regional stakeholders are:
- Access to new financial and transportation services,
- The promotion of more inclusive markets and buyers and sellers’ platforms
- The removal of non-tariff measures and barriers to trade with emphasis on SPS measures
- Access to human and technological resources
- Management of knowledge networks
- Promotion of good practices
- Trust between actors and institutions in the agricultural innovation system, which often impedes collective action
- Adaptive capabilities of family farmers to face external shocks (economic and environmental).
Agricultural officials from Latin American and the Caribbean and will collaborate during the 2-day symposium, which will be conducted in modules to address 3 focal areas.
The deliberations will be closely linked to the work of members of the AFNC which coordinate the work programmes of specific thematic areas and priority commodities, approved by Ministers of Agriculture for regional interventions under the agricultural policy framework for CARICOM.
The release said that agricultural planners of Member States who are directly involved in articulating policy to support processes of innovation and in the mobilisation of technical assistance, as well as representatives of the private sector (including NGOS, youth, women and rural organisations, research agencies, international developmental partners), are participating in the forum.