Plans underway for Caribbean agriculture week in October

The Caribbean Community (Caricom) Secretariat has announced that preparations are advancing for the Caribbean Week of Agriculture (CWA), featuring fisheries and forestry which will be held in Georgetown, Guyana in October.

A release from the Caricom Secretariat said that CWA 2013, the twelfth edition of the Region’s premier agricultural event, will be hosted by the Government of Guyana from October 4-12, 2013, under the theme ‘Linking the Caribbean for Regional Food and Nutrition Security and Rural Development.’

Caribbean Week of Agriculture (CWA), conceptualised by IICA, places agriculture and rural life on the ‘front burner’ of regional integration activities. It aims to enable the key decision-makers in the public and private sectors to better acknowledge the importance of agriculture and rural life to the economic, social and environmental stability of the region. It is also geared to provide major stakeholders in agriculture and related sectors with an opportunity to dialogue and forge a common vision for the repositioning of agriculture and the enhancement of rural life.

The release said that organisers are working towards a dynamic event that incorporates workshop sessions and other fora on agriculture in all its dimensions, field trips and competitions that highlight the use of Caribbean foods in a manner that promotes healthy living. As is customary, a special meeting of the Council for Trade and Economic Development (Coted) on agriculture will be held during the CWA.

While the CWA will be formally opened on Wednesday October 9, the activities will begin on Friday October 4 with two two-day workshops running concurrently, one on Media Science and the other on ICT and Agriculture Value Chains Validation. An inter-faith service is planned for Sunday October 6 at the Guyana International Conference Centre (GICC) where the CWA activities will take place.

An Exposition and Trade Show will be held from October 7-12 and will include several food competitions.

The release said that the preparations for the CWA are being led by a broad-based steering committee that comprises representatives from the government of Guyana, the Caricom Secretariat, the Caribbean Agricultural Research and Development Institute (Cardi), the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA), the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), and the Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation (CTA).

Webpages at the Caricom Secretariat (www.caricom.org) and the Ministry of Agriculture (www.agriculture.gov.gy) have been established to provide information on the CWA 2013, as well as to receive feedback from the general public, the release added.

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