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The Agriculturalist - August 2013 (Denbigh 2013)

The Agriculturalist - August 2013 (Denbigh 2013)

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Published by Patrick Maitland
The Agriculturalist Newspaper was first published in January 1991 and is now Jamaica and the Caribbean only surviving agricultural publication. The newspaper provides the most comprehensive coverage of international and local agricultural news and views, technology transfer, researcher’s results, extension information, trade and market information.
An average readership of 200,000 per issue. The Agriculturalist is target specific to farmers and other agricultural interest groups.
An advertisement in The Agriculturalist is ‘A MUST SEE’ for Farmers; Farm leaders’ Extension Officers; Students of agriculture and Agricultural Decision Makers.
The Agriculturalist Newspaper was first published in January 1991 and is now Jamaica and the Caribbean only surviving agricultural publication. The newspaper provides the most comprehensive coverage of international and local agricultural news and views, technology transfer, researcher’s results, extension information, trade and market information.
An average readership of 200,000 per issue. The Agriculturalist is target specific to farmers and other agricultural interest groups.
An advertisement in The Agriculturalist is ‘A MUST SEE’ for Farmers; Farm leaders’ Extension Officers; Students of agriculture and Agricultural Decision Makers.

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Published by: Patrick Maitland on Aug 02, 2013
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09/25/2013

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By Patrick MaitlandEditor-The Agriculturalist
M
ore than a decade after boasting atotal of 80,215 registered members,the Jamaica Agricultural Society, Jamaica’soldest farmers’ organization, is reporting a92% decline in its membership. The pres-ent membership is only 6,323 members.According to the Society’s Annual Re-port for the period of April 2012 to March31, 2013, all the parishes across the islandhave seen membership plummeted in thehundreds. Clarendon has experienced thesharpest decline in membership with amere 317 members compared with 15,240in 2000.St. Mary has seen a significant loss of 9,637 to 382 members. St Catherine fol-lowed with 598 from 7,584, St. Ann 493 of 6,855, St Elizabeth 377 of 6,550, Man-chester 412 of 6,122, St Thomas 334 of 5304, Trelawny 347 of 4802, Portland 919of 4,131, Westmoreland 624 of 4,040, St.Andrew 759 of 3,847, St. James 295 of 3550 and Hanover with 466 of 2,554members.The JAS also suffered losses in its affili-ated branch network that now stands at 245compared to 981 in 2000. Clarendon (10),St. James (11), St Mary (12) and St.Thomas (13) recorded major decline dur-ing the period.However, Christopher Emanuel, JASCEO explains the “declining membership”is a result of management policy to listonly “dues paying members” as part of theofficial membership.Mr Emanuel further notes that despite thepolicy, several thousands non-member/farmers continue to benefit andparticipate in various JAS-sponsored ac-tivities. “A large percent of these peopleare unable to pay the minimal dues of $200per year and we will continue to servicethem,” he adds.
Continued on page 4
 VOL. 24 NO. 3 AUGUST 2013 FREECOPY WWW.THEAGRICULTURALIST.COM
JAS Members Declined by 92%
DENBIGH CHAMPIONS:
(l-r) Champion farmer, Leslie Murray; Farm Queen 2012 Amelia Leveridge and Young Champion, Nicholas Powell posewith their trophies at Denbigh Show 2012.
T
he organisers of the Denbigh Agricul-tural and Industrial Show are lookingforward to another successful event, sched-ule for August 4-6, 2013 at the DenbighShowgrounds, Clarendon.Chairman of the show’s organisingcommittee and president, Jamaica Agri-cultural Society (JAS) Grant Grant saidthe JAS is seeking to diversify the Denbighshow, which started some 61 years ago.This 61st staging will live up expecta-tions, as the tourism, youth, health and or-ganic villages will be in operation.The JAS will be seeking to attract atleast 70,000 patrons to the annual agricul-tural showcase.
 Denbigh feature pages 9-14
RescueOrganicFertilizer
Kitson Town P.A.St. Catherine, Jamaica(876) 610-7283
DenbighShow ‘13
Christopher Emanuel, JAS CEO
 
2
THE AGRICULTURALIST AUGUST 2013 WWW.THEAGRICULTURALIST.COM
 
WWW.THEAGRICULTURALIST.COMAUGUST 2013 THE AGRICULTURALIST 3
EDITORIAL PAGE
T
he despicable practice of robbing andstealing of farm produce or praediallarceny has been a major setback for Ja-maican farmers for several decades.These criminal activities have been fea-tured and listed in several crime reportsand studies on Jamaican agriculture. Hun-dreds of farmers died during the process,while others sustain serious bodily injuriesas another man reap the sweat of theirlabour.Praedial larceny appears to be a majorconspiracy or cover-up to the extend thatthe government economists are always un-derestimating the direct and indirect lossesto farmers.For many years the losses have been es-timated at $4-5 billion annually. Howridiculous? In our estimation the losses iswell over $10 billion annually.However, we all agree that farm theft is amajor deterrent to the development of theagricultural sector. Several solutions havebeen put forward to solve the problem, butnothing seems to work.It’s like more talks and promises fromour political leaders.The Jamaican farmers are frustrated andare giving up on the Government’s abilityand willingness to protect them from thecriminals who raid their properties.As Jamaica’s longest serving Minister of Agriculture for over ten years, RogerClarke is still not able to find a solution.He is correct however in stating that “prae-dial larceny should be treated like anyother major crimes with a specialized po-lice squad assigned to deal with the issues."Praedial larceny is worst than scammingas far as the farmers of this country areconcerned and we cannot continue to ig-nore these practices.We all know that it is a national crimeand it discourages people from ever con-sidering going into the agriculture sector.We need to stop talking about the prob-lems and seek positive solutions if we areserious about the welfare of our farmers.We are recommending the following ap-proaches:• The Government must put in place newlegislation to strengthened existing laws todiscourage the thieves. This means longerprison term and heavier fines for offend-ers.• The Jamaica Constabulary Force shouldestablish the “Anti-Praedial Larceny Unit’under the command of an assistant com-missioner of police.• Create an advisory committee compris-ing of farmers and other stakeholders toprovide guidance to the police in everyparish and areas most affected.All higglers and traders of farm pro-duce must be registered with the ‘Anti-Praedial Larceny Unit’ and provide proof of purchases.• The farmers should not be forced topurchase the “JAS receipt book” any re-ceipt book should be fine.• Keep a reliable record of praedial lar-ceny activities and profile the criminals inthe media and in the local communities asin several cases, the criminals are assistedby neighbours and other people in the com-munity.We agree with Minister Clarke that theproblem cannot be left to the Ministry of Agriculture alone as it is a matter that re-quires strong police intervention and en-forcement of the laws.In fact, praedial larceny is no differentfrom tourism harassment, lottery scam orshop breaking which are all criminal activ-ities that the police cover everyday.As a society we need to show more re-spect for the farmers by putting an end topraedial larceny.
by
PATRICK MAITLAND
Publisher -The Agriculturalisteditor@theagriculturalist.com
The opinions expressed in this newspaper, except for the above, do not necessarily reflect the views of The Agriculturalist and its publishers. Please send your comments or suggestionsto editor@theagriculturalist.com. Responses should be no longer than 400 words. Not all articles will be published.
FocalPoint
Time to fix the praedial larceny problem
Dear Editor,Today I heard Minister of AgricultureRoger Clark saying that he would try to en-sure that "foods" containing GeneticallyModified components be labeled as such.A few minutes of internet researchshows the dangers of eating "foods" withGM components, the various diseaseswhich are linked with them, and the prom-ises which do not materialize in practice.You will quickly find the long list of Monsanto executives who shuffle back andforth between government boards andMonsanto positions, thus ensuring theirproducts are approved.Clark should interview the Haitianfarmers who burned Monsanto seeds inpublic and find out why they refused them.Monsanto has been trying to eliminatenatural seeds and forcing everyone world-wide to buy their GM seeds every year!He should talk to the dozens of widowsin India whose husbands chose SUICIDEwhen they could not repay their loans, alldue to GM seeds.Roger should find out why Europeansrejected GM "foods" and do want them ontheir shelves.He needs to find out how GM plantscontaminate natural species and destroy di-versity, leading to serious problems.Jamaica should prove its independencefrom the American empire by banning allGM seeds and "foods" from entering Ja-maica. It is felt by many that Haiti and Ja-maica are two puppet governmentscontrolled from Washington, so we have todisprove that notion now.Michael Maragh<michaelmaragh@hotmail.com>
OPINIONS
The dangers of eating "foods" with GM components!
Continued from page 1
The Society has been plac-ing great emphasis on increas-ing membership and as aresult, there was a 52% in-crease in branch membershipfees during the year comparedwith the previous year.“Furthermore the Societyin an effort to continue this up-ward growth will seek to in-crease contact with farmers,improve services, reactivatingdormant branches and intro-duce community base eco-nomic projects,” the CEO says.“The JAS is currently on amassive membership drive toreturn the membership to itsformer days,” Emanuel prom-ises.As a statutory body under theMinistry of Agriculture, the Ja-maica Agricultural Society re-ceived $83.6 million or 82% of its income as government sub-vention during the 2012/2013fiscal year, but there are also“bureaucratic obstacles thatprevented us from applyingmore stringent managing prac-tices including the hiring andfiring of staff,” Mr. Emanueladds, “our aim is to restructurethe JAS into a modern and ef-ficient organization to meet theneeds of today’s farmers.”It was a very good financialyear for the JAS. The total in-come increased by 24.3 % re-sulting in a surplus/profit of $5.24million. Significant con-tributions from membershipand affiliations fees of $1.08and $6.12million, respectivelywere among the contributionfactors to the positive financialgrowth.The Jamaica Agricultural So-ciety was established in 1895with the aim of representingthe interests of farmers by of-fering a plethora of services toits’ members to enhance theirlevels of productivity and ulti-mately facilitate the overall de-velopment of the agriculturalsector.
Publisher & Editor:
Patrick Maitland
Advertising Executive:
Tricia Reece
Consulting Editors:
Vincent Wright, Jairzenho BaileyProduced & Publishedby:
Agri Life Foundation Ltd
AMC Complex,188 Spanish Town Road,Kingston 11, Jamaica, W.I.Tel: (876) 923-7471• 923-7428Fax: (876) 923-7428agriculturalist@gmail.comeditor@theagriculturalist.comwww.theagriculturalist.com
JAS Members Declined by 92%
ORDER YOUR
TROPICAL FARMERS’ALMANAC 2014
CALL: 923-7471

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The Agriculturalist - August 2013 (Denbigh 2013) The Agriculturalist Newspaper was first published in January 1991 and is now Jamaica and the Caribbean only surviving agricultural publication. The newspaper provides the most comprehensive coverage of international and local agricultural news and views, technology transfer, researcher’s results, extension information, trade and market information.
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