Published 18 May 2023
Buckie Got It News Source
AGRICULTURE MINISTRY INCREASING VETERINARIAN CAPACITY TO ENHANCE LIVESTOCK SECTOR
Hon. Samal Duggins, continued his second in a series of meetings with Livestock farmers and other stakeholders in the agricultural sector on Thursday, 11th May 2023 in the Large Conference Room at the Department of Agriculture.
During the meeting, the Acting Permanent Secretary revealed that the Ministry has been working persistently to give farmers improved access to veterinary services. He then announced that the Department of Agriculture will soon receive assistance from two Veterinarians who are expected to arrive on island before the end of the second quarter and will be tasked with the surveillance, prevention, treatment, and control of animal diseases.
Mr. Flemming said, “I am happy to announce that after consultations in December, Livestock farmers will be able to receive veterinary care for their animals as early as this month. Two veterinarians have been hired and the first is expected to arrive from Trinidad on May 23rd 2023, while the other from St. Vincent and the Grenadines is expected to arrive in St. Kitts by the end of June.”
He added, “We know how important it is for you the farmers to have the health and welfare of your animals taken into consideration and we at the Ministry take that very seriously. The challenge has been finding trained vets on island because this particular job is not popular on island so we are also grateful for the assistance and the partnership of Ross University who provides these services and I encourage more persons to pursue this field of study.”
The farmers responded to the announcement with pleasure and expressed that they looked forward to receiving quality service from the new Vet personnel. The group of livestock- rearing food producers then expressed their views on several other topics such as the availability of feed, land allocation, equipment management and road preparation, duty free concessions, veterinary care and medical services, partnerships with other government departments and allied agencies.
Meanwhile, Manager of the St. Kitts Water Services Department, Cromwell Williams was present to address the most common issue raised which was the inadequate supply of water on farms. Williams, who is also the Water Engineer, said the Water Services Department will work diligently with the Ministry of Agriculture to find a sustainable solution to the water concerns affecting the farming community. He then proceeded to share his contact information to farmers interested in continuing discussions one-on-one.
The Honourable Samal Duggins wrapped up the consultation-styled meeting by reassuring his pledge to fulfill his commitment to the farming and fishing community through support provided by the government of St. Kitts and Nevis.
He also encouraged the farmers to strive to improve on their skills and business practices by acquiring more training and education through opportunities offered by the Ministry of Agriculture.