CARDI Helping Saint Lucia To Get More Youth Involved In Agriculture – St. Lucia Times

The content originally appeared on: St. Lucia Times News

– Advertisement –

Amid an ageing farming population, the Caribbean Agricultural Research and Development Institute (CARDI) is assisting Saint Lucia and other Caribbean countries in getting more young people involved in agriculture.

“We realise a lot of the farmers are aged,” CARDI’s representative in Saint Lucia, Andre Barry Innocent, disclosed.

Innocent revealed that farmers are usually between forty and sixty-plus.

The CARDI official said his organisation is exploring various initiatives to attract more youth to agriculture.

– Advertisement –

“There is an inclination towards using more computers and drones and all that type of thing, in collaboration with our Ministry of Agriculture in our different countries,” Innocent told the programme ‘Agriculture on the Move.’

He said the objective was to make agriculture more interesting for young people.

Available data showed that the average age of Caribbean farmers is above 45 years.

But many are over sixty.

In addition, young people generally do not view agriculture as a viable occupation.

As a result, relatively few become farmers.

Caribbean countries have been encouraging their citizens to grow more of what they eat and eat more of that they grow to reduce food imports and improve food security.

However, a recent food security and livelihoods survey conducted by the World Food Programme and the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) in the Caribbean region revealed that 3.7 million people, or 52 percent of the population of the English-speaking Caribbean, remain food insecure.

The region wants to reduce imports by 25 percent by 2025, including strengthening Caribbean food systems to make them resilient and adaptive to shocks.

At the same time, CARICOM hopes to build on measures to address the affordability, accessibility, and availability of livelihood inputs.

– Advertisement –