Cabinet approves $2M to stimulate local food production
Agriculture Minister Dr Natalio Wheatley said $2 Million has been set aside to stimulate local food production and assist fisherfolk in the British Virgin Islands.
"...This morning, the Cabinet of the Virgin Islands approved a sum of $2 Million to stimulate the local Fishing and Farming sector. This stimulus package is titled, “the Rapid Response Fishing and Farming Production Programme.”," announced Hon. Dr Natalio Wheatley, Minister for Education, Culture, Youth Affairs, Fisheries and Agriculture.
Speaking via a statement late Friday, he said the Cabinet of the Virgin Islands approved the sum for the stimulus package labelled, ‘The Rapid Response Fishing and Farming Production Programme’.
“It means that this funding programme will be used to purchase the supplies, among other areas, necessary to get our fisherfolks back in the water. It means that this funding will be used to purchase the needed supplies to get our farmers back on their grounds. And access to this funding means that we will ramp up production and provide the local market with the food necessary to sustain ourselves in this Virgin Islands economy,” Dr Wheatley explained.
The Agriculture Minister then invited ‘fulltime commercial fishers and farmers’ to contact the Department of Agriculture at 284-468-6123 to register for this programme.
He said they’s be required to give information on the type of support that is needed to get them moving forward.
Additionally, Minister Wheatley said he would be drawing on the vast agricultural expertise within the BVI to support the programme.
“Fishing and farming is nothing new to the people of the Virgin Islands. It is how we initially built this economy. We are going back to basics but in a modern form for the saying is true: “We must never forget our roots.” Fishing and farming sustained our fore-parents for centuries, and Fishing and Farmers can help us today.”