Guyana on track to achieve self-sufficiency in corn, soya bean production
– aims to become major supplier in the region
Guyana is making remarkable strides towards achieving self-sufficiency in the production of corn and soya bean.
On Tuesday, President, Dr. Mohamed Irfaan Ali announced that Guyana is well on its way to achieving this goal and becoming a major supplier of these crops in the region.
“We started off two years ago and we said we are going to be self-sufficient for all the corn and soya as input for feed in Guyana, and I am convinced now,” the head of state said, while addressing the Private Sector Commission’s (PSC) annual general meeting at the Guyana Marriott Hotel, Kingston, Georgetown.
The 1000 acres of soya bean crop planted in Tacama Savannah are on course to be harvested. This venture, which started in 2021, is being done through a public-private partnership.
As part of government’s support to the industry, over $1.2 billion was allocated in this year’s budget for infrastructural development in Tacama.
The administration is also investing in the construction of three 3,000-tonne silos and one 80-tonne-per-hour drying tower at the Tacama Landing.
Minister of Agriculture, Zulfikar Mustapha recently announced that the drying and storage facilities will be completed within the next two to three months.
Additionally, work has commenced on an agriculture venture at Moco Moco village, Region Nine which involves the cultivation of corn and soya bean.
The government had invested some $3 million in this mega project.
“I received an update on the second mega agriculture project in Region Nine on corn and soya, the integrated farm. When that farm is finished its going to be amazing,” President Ali stated.
The initiative is a key component of the government’s concerted efforts to boost agricultural productivity, and reduce the nation’s dependence on imports of these commodities which stands at $60 million annually.
It also aligns with the Caribbean Community’s (CARICOM) quest to reduce the region’s food importation bill by 25 per cent by the year 2025. This effort is being spearheaded by President Ali.
“We are not talking this leadership in food security alone, we are building the infrastructure, creating the vehicle through which we are going to achieve this,” the head of state affirmed.
President Ali said among other new agriculture ventures being pursued is the establishment of a laboratory in Guyana with the capacity to grow more than four million plants annually. This, he said, is being discussed with an international partner.