Guyana looking to expand agri-business to boost food production
Guyana is gradually moving towards agri-business, as part of the government’s consistent plan to acquire higher levels of productivity in the agriculture sector.
The administration recently engaged India for potential collaboration to enhance the local food sector.
“We need the expertise from many parts of the world to transform these industries into agribusiness and with higher levels of productivity,” Vice President, Dr Bharrat Jagdeo said during a recent press conference.
“We are hoping over the next few months that a lot of these specialists would be recruited and brought to Guyana to give a big boost to the agriculture sector and expand its productivity,” Dr Jagdeo underscored.
One area of focus for collaboration is tissue culture, which allows for the rapid production of high-quality planting material.
Guyana’s current nurseries are struggling to supply the necessary materials, but the vice president believes that with the help of Indian specialists and facilities, the country could see a significant boost in productivity.
Tissue culture allows for the production of millions of plants in a short amount of time, all with the same consistency and productivity.
“It would be a big, huge opportunity for Guyanese to work in these areas. It would be a big boost to say our cane farming industry and we need planting material now of high quality. You can get a million plants in a short period of time. And also, everything else, almost any tree that’s grown you can culture it through tissue culture,” the vice president explained.
The technology can be applied to a range of crops, from sugarcane and aquaculture to spices and coconut cultivation, which the government is also looking to expand in the future.
In fact, the government is looking to utilise a portion of state land along the banks of the river for coconut cultivation, Dr Jagdeo disclosed.
He emphasised the potential for job creation and economic growth in these areas, which could benefit Guyanese farmers and the country as a whole.
India’s expertise in agricultural research and development makes the country a natural partner for Guyana in its endeavour.
With the ability to feed over 1.4 billion people through highly productive and sustainable methods, India’s collaboration could prove invaluable to Guyana’s agriculture sector.
Dr Jagdeo said there is also potential collaboration in biogas and biofuels, while stressing the need for sustainable and environmentally friendly agricultural practices.