Plans are in motion for the implementation of a statutory body to function as, among other things, a guaranteed market for fish and agricultural produce.
Agriculture Minister Dr Natalio Wheatley said establishing the body would be just one of the initiatives to be done as legislators work on updating the existing laws for fishing and agriculture.
“Our agriculture legislation had not been modernized in many years, and so we wanted to update that and, of course, agriculture and fisheries combined not too long ago, so the legislation has to reflect that,” he said during a conference on social media Wednesday.
Dr Wheatley said this new statutory body would “separate the function of the Department of Agriculture as a regulator” and provide “extension services and other types of services to farmers”.
He further said the body would also offer some level of subsidy for fisherfolk and farmers and “deal mainly with the business of agriculture”.
The minister said this entity would also be responsible for purchasing quality produce directly from farmers and fisherfolk.
“This body can then form a direct link with the restaurants with the hotels, supermarkets.”
Dr Wheatley, in the meantime, said a modern facility to serve as a fishing/farming market is also to be constructed.
“We are finalizing a location, finalizing design plans,” the minister stated.
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