KINGSTON, Jamaica — Way has been made clear for the export of Jamaican grown Irish potatoes into the Cayman Islands.
Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Industry, Commercial Agriculture and Fisheries JC Hutchinson made the announcement while addressing farmers at an Irish Potato and Onion Production Seminar held yesterday at Hounslow in St Elizabeth to kick start the 2017-2018 planting season.
Hutchinson said that the Plant Quarantine and Plant Inspection Division of the ministry had secured an agreement with the Cayman Islands for export of the tuber, among a range of other agricultural items, under the pre-clearance facility between the two countries.
The inclusion of Irish potato on the export list is as a result of an expansion of the current protocol for exporting agricultural produce to Cayman and it is expected that the trade of these additional items will commence immediately.
The export arrangement with the Cayman Islands is expected to enhance Government's overall thrust for the expansion and development of the Irish potato industry in Jamaica.
Under the National Irish Potato Programme, local production of the tuber has moved from 39 per cent of demand in 2008 to a projected 99 per cent in 2017.