The Kingston and St. Andrew Association of Branch Societies of JAS in association with the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries, RADA St. Andrew , the Jamaica 4-H Clubs and Mavis Bank Coffee Factory present the 20th staging of the Kingston and St. Andrew Agricultural, Industrial and Food Show, ‘Agrofest’ on Saturday May 14, 2016, at the Jamaica College Grounds, 189 Old Hope Road, Kingston 6 under the theme grow what we eat and eat what we grow
The Annual Parish Agricultural show was introduced by the Kingston and St. Andrew Association of Branch Societies/JAS in the year 1971 at Golden Spring under the leadership of then President THE LATE Mrs. Thelma King. After a twenty-five (25) year absence, it was re-introduced in the year 1996 under the leadership of President, Norman W. Grant. Jamaica College has been the home of the Show since its re-introduction and 10 years ago we rebrand the show “AGROFEST” Now ‘Agrofest Jamaica’
Over the years, Agrofest has served as an honoring, supporting and saluting our farmers and customers in the parish for their invaluable contribution to the development of the local economy, while encouraging more young people to choose agriculture as a career option. One of the Objectives of Agrofest is to sensitize the nation on the profound national, community based and personal benefits to be garnered from the JAS campaign our goal as a country to be food secured and independent.
Domestic Crop Production
In additional to create a market for our farmers and to celebrate their importance to the development of Kingston and St Andrew. The account of Kingston and St Andrew accounts for approximately 1.7 percent of the 571,000 metric tonnes of produce in 2015, that is 9,707 tonnes. The parish also accounts for 6673 thousand or 3.7 percent of the country 177,842 registered farmers.
The Business of Jamaica Blue Mountain Coffee
St Andrew also produces approximately 45 percent of the Jamaica Blue Mountain coffee produced annually. In 2014-15 crop the total of JBM production was 1.9 million pound therefore this represents 855,000 pounds. This represent farm gate value of approximately $1 billion. The prices presently being paid to JBM Coffee farmers have moved from $2,500 per box in 2009-2010 crop to now $10,000 to $12,000 per box. This is helping to correct the huge decline on production of JBM which fell from 6 million pound in 2003-2004 to a 25 year low of 1.9 million pounds. This is being drive by the increase in the prices to our coffee farmer and as a result some 1,000 acres of coffee is being resuscitated that will increase JBM production to 4 million pound nationally in 4 years and from 855,000 pounds to 1.8 million pounds in St Andrew alone, so we could see the farm gate business of JBM moving from $1 billion to close to $2 billion. On this basis alone, justify my call for the Government of Jamaica through the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries to implement Coffee Agroparks where the focus should be improved roads, irrigation systems, fundings and the development of nurseries. Of the country’s over 7,000 coffee farmers more than 3,500 are these farmers are in St Andrew.
Other features of the show include: 20th Anniversary Celebration, Police Mounted Troop Exhibition and Guardsman Canine Display, 4H Club Public Speaking Competition, JAS ‘Eat Jamaican’ Cook-off Competition, Domino Competition, Farm Queen Competition, JAS Branch competitions, Best Commercial Exhibit Competition, Champion Coffee Farmer Competition, Small Ruminants Display and a Kiddies Village. Entertainment will be provided for the entire family throughout the day. There will be a Farmers’ Market where fresh agricultural produce will be available for patrons. We will also be recognizing the pioneer of the events which are those individual who were there when we launched the event in 1996 and who have stayed with the event over the 20 years.A lucky patron will be awarded a gate prize at the end of the Show.
Our 20th Anniversary celebration is a combination of all the wonderful memories of the past 20 years, rejoicing in the now and looking forward to a great future in agriculture through continued campaign to grow what we eat and eat what we grow. You will not want to miss this landmark event! Please follow us on facebook at agrofestjamaica or call us at 9220610 or our website jas.org.jm or firstname.lastname@example.org