- 4,000 farmers targeted for pilot exercise
On Friday, August 5, 2022, the Ministry of Agriculture through the Sustainable Agriculture Development Program (SADP) launched its agriculture survey at the Regency Suites Hotel.
The much-anticipated agriculture survey, which is being funded by the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), will see the collection of data from approximately 4,000 farmers residing in Regions Two, Three, Four, Five, Six, and Ten.
Some US $1,000,000 was allocated to conduct the survey under the SADP, which aims to increase the productivity of the agriculture sector while maintaining sustainable and climate-resilient use of natural resources in Guyana.
A total of 120 tablets, 19 computers, four printers, and 120 survey packages containing jerseys, hats, bags, and stationary were procured at approximately $24,971,000 and approximately 100 enumerators are expected to be trained to conduct the survey in the targeted regions.
While delivering remarks at the launch, Agriculture Minister Zulfikar Mustapha said that the survey will assist with developing a register of farmers, detailing what they produce, where they are located, and how much they are producing.
“Over the last two years, we’ve seen a number of initiatives being implemented by the government targeting farmers, a lot of farmers were not captured. Last year we experienced one of, if not, the most devastating floods in our country’s history where 90% of our agriculture sector was destroyed. The government decided to give relief to the farmers but, to date, we are hearing that some farmers didn’t receive any relief. It is activities like these that will help us to know exactly how many farmers are in our country, where they are located and the number of crops they are producing,” the minister explained.
Minister Mustapha further stated that the data collected will also assist the government with crafting realistic policies to further develop the sector and the country.
“This survey will help us to set our programmes because when you set programmes, especially in the agriculture sector, you have to be more realistic because we are dealing with food and food security. Without proper analysis and proper knowledge, we wouldn’t be able to set programmes that capture all the activities our farmers are involved in,” Minister Mustapha said.
IDB Guyana’s Chief of Operation. Lorena Solorzano-Salazar said that the project was important to both the government and the Private Sector.
“The objective of this project includes producing high-quality data for the agriculture sector, increasing productivity, especially for the small and medium farmers, agriculture that is appropriate for innovation and extension systems as well as compliance with sanitary and phytosanitary systems. Hence, the agriculture survey is relevant to enhance the capability of the Ministry of Agriculture for data collection and knowledge dissemination of an agriculture database. This new information will add value to the government for decision making and also to the Private Sector to develop investment in the agriculture sector in line with foreign development priorities,” she noted.
The survey is expected to commence before the end of August 2022.