Partnership of TTM and IICA to Benefit St Lucia

The Taiwan Technical Mission has embarked on a partnership with the Inter-American Institute for the Corporation on Agriculture (IICA) to develop special projects that would be beneficial at this time. The primary objective of this Action Plan is to encourage and promote co-operation in technology-related and management areas which shall be to the benefit to Taiwan ICDF and the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture and accelerate the improvement of agriculture, agro-processing and rural development and in St Lucia and the wider Caribbean region and to enhance agriculture production and productivity in St Lucia

The International Cooperation and Development Fund (Taiwan ICDF) and the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA) are cognizant of their key roles in the socio-economic development in the Caribbean region. In Saint Lucia, both parties are desirous of co-operating for their mutual benefit and for the growth and development of agriculture, agricultural processing, and agricultural development in Saint Lucia and other countries in the wider Caribbean region.

The Ongoing Projects from Taiwan ICDF and IICA are as follows:

  • Enhancement of the Efficiency of Production-Distribution Supply Chains in the Fruit and Vegetable Sector Project – Taiwan ICDF

Project Budget: Funded by the ongoing project.

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  • Project for supply of safe foods to local, regional and global markets through capacity building in recognized food safety standards, systems and services – IICA

Project Budget: Funded by the ongoing project.

According to current ongoing goals of the Taiwan ICDF and IICA, both have etched out two special projects as a means of co-operating this year; these are:

1. The Capacity Building in Commercial Compost Production Special Project and

2. Enhanced Institutional Mechanisms for Safe Supply of Food Special Project.

Cacao trees are the next focus crop for Saint Lucia to encourage revival through increase planting in the near future. However, 99 percent of the fertilizers used in the cocoa industry in Saint Lucia are imported from overseas. The cocoa industry has great potential for the future of St Lucia’s agriculture, particularly as the spread of COVID-19 has led to uncertainties in the global fertilizer import market.

The Taiwan Technical Mission hosted a signing ceremony on June 30th which was symbolic of Taiwan’s support for Saint Lucia.

Therefore, the goal of this special project is to provide key compost production technologies for St Lucia’s cocoa industry to maintain cocoa production and quality. This would begin in July 2020 and extend to December 2020.

IICA will focus on Identifying farmer’s specific needs as it pertains to the production of compost geared towards the Cacao industry in St Lucia, as well as assisting cacao farmers to design and construct compost areas/sheds aided by technical advice provided by the Taiwan Technical Mission. The Taiwan Technical Mission will focus on conducting training on efficiency in composting and various methods of conducting the composting process.

Food Safety is an essential development strategy in the Caribbean region, and hence capacity to adopt market-required food safety and hygiene standards is an indispensable part. Specifically, the adoption of food safety practices, as well as Good Agricultural Practices (GAPs) and Good Manufacturing Practices (GMPs) by actors/institutions along the supply chain, enhances the supply capacity and capabilities of these actors/institutions to both actively enter and participate in target markets. Currently, only banana farmers obtain the Global GAP certification to export to European countries. The majority of local vegetable and fruit farmers in St Lucia are small scale food producers who have difficulty coordinating with supply chain partners to maintain and/or achieve the required market standards. In St Lucia, the St Lucia Marketing Board (SLMB) pack house has been identified as an important institution and asset along the supply chain that can help to stabilize the supply of agricultural products to the market.

Therefore, the objective of this special project is to strengthen the capabilities of the SLMB and actors in the supply chain for priority commodities to coordinate on adoption of standards for GAP and GMP, and to assist agricultural stakeholders along the domestic fruit and vegetable supply chain to become familiar with these market requirements. This is set to Begin in July 2020 and extend to December, 2020.

We look forward to this collaboration with IICA and are excited for the success of these special projects as we continue to promote safety and sustainability in Saint Lucia.

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