Georgetown, 29 October 2022 (TDI): CARICOM (Caribbean Community) Secretary General, Dr. Carla Natalie Barnett has announced to launch “I Am Agriculture” campaign.

This is a World Food Program (WFP) and Caribbean Community Secretariat (CCS) joint initiative to bring youth into the agriculture sector.

This initiative will allow young people and farmers to participate in the sector and access resources to capitalize on opportunities. It will also enhance employment opportunities for the youth in the Caribbean region.

Remarks by Secretary General CARICOM

While addressing the launch of the “I am Agriculture” initiative she highlighted the importance of youth participation in the agriculture sector.

“As it stands now in our Region, young people constitute a section of the society with the highest levels of unemployment and food insecurity.

However, like the agriculture sector, the youth possess untapped potential. Their capacities for creative economic activity are not fully realized when opportunities are limited.”

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“Facilitating youth participation in the agriculture sector will provide much-needed employment opportunities and will also help to drive innovation and growth.

And of course, the resulting benefit to our countries and our community will also grow”, she added. The Secretary-General also appreciated the efforts of the World Food Program and other agriculture sector partners for the launch of this initiative.

Aside from this, Dr. Carla Natalie Barnett also announced the establishment of the Youth in Agriculture Council. This will include youth farmers of all member & associate member states to participate in CARICOM’s 25 by 2025 food reduction bill plan.

Food Reduction Bill

The members of CARICOM committed to reducing the region’s food import bill by 25% by 2025. This food reduction bill initiative was signed in August 2022 by the heads of the government of CARICOM.

The target of the reduction bill is expected to be achieved through the implementation of the CARICOM Agri-Food Systems Strategy. This importance will be directed towards priority crops in the region that are highly imported.