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JM | Jan 19, 2023

RADA receives six new tractors valued at $49.7 million

/ Our Today

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Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries Pearnel Charles Jr (centre), State Minister Franklin Witter (second left) lead ribbon cutting exercise at the handing over ceremony. Joining them are Chief Technical Director in the ministry Courtney Cole (from left), Acting CEO at RADA Winston Simpson and Vice Chairman for RADA Board of Directors, Richard King (Photo:JIS)

The Rural Agricultural Development Authority (RADA) has received six new tractors, valued at $49.7 million, to boost agricultural productivity in parishes such as St Thomas, StAnn, St Elizabeth, Clarendon, Manchester and St Catherine.

Pearnel Charles Jr, minister of agriculture and fisheries, speaking at the handover ceremony on Tuesday (January 17), said the equipment expansion is a step by the agency to strengthen its offering to farmers.

“Food security is a priority for every single Jamaican, and we don’t want to just be producing food, we want to be producing in a sustainable way and operating as efficiently as possible,” said Charles.

“So, the utilisation of mechanisation and equipment and innovation is important.”

Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries Pearnel Charles Jr climbs on to one of the six tractors handed over to RADA on Tuesday (January 17). (Photo: JIS).

Charles noted that the tractors will assist farmers with land preparation, ploughing, harrowing, farrowing, ripping, rotovating and bush cutting, as well as provide support with drainage.

The six new tractors are an addition to the seven tractors currently being used by the RADA.

He implored farmers to exercise “due diligence” in utilising the services provided and to undertake preliminary basic land preparation before employing the use of the tractor service.

Three of the six tractors handed over to RADA on Tuesday (January 17). (Photo: JIS).

Franklin Witter, state minister for agriculture and fisheries, also said: “The ministry is committed in making sure that we deliver in terms of our investment in mechanisation… that we deliver in terms of our investment in respect of the support that we give to our farmers.”

Witter also urged parish managers to take care of the equipment as they deliver the service to the farmers.

Winston Simpson, acting CEO of RADA, outlined that the organisation is ‘rebranding and realigning’ to provide growth to the agricultural sector by the end of the financial year.

Jamaica Information Service

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