ARE WE ON THE RIGHT TRACK?

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1 SUSTAINABLE AGRICULTURE AND FOOD SECURITY FOR TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO ARE WE ON THE RIGHT TRACK? Presented by: Mr Samaroo Dowlath, Food Industry Stakeholder

2 Sustainable Agriculture what is it? The term sustainable agriculture means an integrated system of plant and animal production practices having a site-specific application that will, over the long term: satisfy human food and fiber needs enhance environmental quality and the natural resource base upon which the agricultural economy depends make the most efficient use of nonrenewable resources and on-farm resources and integrate, where appropriate, natural biological cycles and controls sustain the economic viability of farm operations and enhance the quality of life for farmers and society as a whole.

3 Food Security The World Food Summit of 1996 defined food security as existing when all people at all times have access to sufficient, safe, nutritious food to maintain a healthy and active life. Commonly, the concept of food security is defined as including both physical and economic access to food that meets people's dietary needs as well as their food preferences. Food security is built on three pillars: Food availability: sufficient quantities of food available on a consistent basis. Food access: having sufficient resources to obtain appropriate foods for a nutritious diet. Food use: appropriate use based on knowledge of basic nutrition and care, as well as adequate water and sanitation

4 GOVERNMENT POLICY Food and Nutrition Security Increase in sector s contribution to GDP (from 0.6% to 3.0% in 5 years) Economic diversification and restructuring

5 THE INTERNATIONAL SITUATION Characterized by increasing scarcity, hunger and malnutrition as well as rising prices due to: Growth of financial investment in commodities. It is estimated that financial speculation accounts for 30 percent of the increase in food prices The price hike in oil, which is not only needed for food production and transport, but also promotes increased food consumption in oil-producing countries Restrictions on food exports Increased demand from Asia in particular Demand for animal feed, especially maize Increased demand for biofuels Costly and unsustainable industrial systems for food production (subsidised also)

6 (Int l situation cont d) Climate change (drought, floods) Production cost increases (fertilisers, seeds, pesticides and machinery) as well as transport and logistical costs (food storage and distribution), in line with the soaring oil prices Limitations on water and agricultural land, which is in competition with other types of land use Lack of new technology, due to low levels of investment in research and development Protectionist policies in the industrialised countries of the North

7 This means that countries dependent on imported food are exposing themselves to serious risks with respect to food and nutrition security

8 80% of food products imported THE NATIONAL SITUATION Corresponding increases in food prices A number of challenges facing local production - Land availability - Water management - Other infrastructure for production (access roads etc) - Labour

9 (challenges cont d) - Capital - Inputs - Training - Research and Development - Agricultural insurance

10 (challenges cont d) - Praedial larceny - Institutional strengthening - Marketing - Value adding This has resulted in decreasing output from our farms, decreasing agricultural exports, increasing food imports and increasing food prices.

11 In order to meet the strategic goals and objectives of (1) food and nutrition security and (2) increasing contribution to GDP a strategic plan for the agricultural sector is essential.

12 The individual projects/programmes currently being undertaken for the sector are necessary but are not sufficient to meet the strategic objectives Essentially we will be picking the hanging fruits with production increases resulting from current activities

13 The quantum leap in production which is necessary to meet the strategic goals and objectives would require indepth examination of the programmes and resources necessary to achieve such production outputs

14 THE SUPPLY CHAIN APPROACH Establishes the links from conception to consumption in an economic sector. Inside of the supply chain, enterprises can be located within any of several value chains.

15 SUPPLY CHAIN Some Commodities and Product Producers Raw Materials Commodities Marketeers/Co-ops Raw Products Commodities Processing Manufacturing P A C K A G I N G Products Food Beverages Feed Fuel Fibre Some Fresh Products Consumers Retailers and Markets Market Intermediaries Agents Wholesalers Others

16 FRUIT AND VEGETABLE SUPPLY CHAIN (physical inputs) (physical inputs) Local Market Seeds and plants Packaging and labeling (physical inputs) Fertiliser Machinery and equipment Pesticides etc Transport (refrigerated Transport (refrigerated) Labour Labour Labour Packaging Facilities (incl. cooling) Post harvest facilities (soft inputs) Contracts GROWER VALUE ADDING MARKETING Export Market (soft inputs) (soft inputs) (physical inputs) Finance Finance Training crop mgt Contracts Refrigerated storage and transport Soil analysis Monitoring Mechanical support Mechanical support Certification Labour Contracts R&D support Extension services Training (soft inputs) Monitoring Technical support Business training Customs brokerage Certification Certification R&D support Contracts Logistical support

17 In assisting our producers in crop selection and in making land available for production, as well as in development of infrastructure to facilitate such production, we must be guided by policy directives FOOD AND NUTRITION SECURITY? INCREASING VALUE OF OUTPUT FROM THE SECTOR? BY HOW MUCH? Are we counting in this the value added along the chain? OTHER POLICY DIRECTIVES? Are we linking with regional production?

18 THE FOCUS OF CURRENT INITIATIVES APPEAR TO BE PRIMARILY ON THE PRODUCTION SIDE AND IT IS IMPORTANT TO ENSURE THAT WHEN OUR FARMERS PRODUCE ARRANGEMENTS WOULD BE IN PLACE TO ENSURE THAT THEY CAN DISPOSE OF THEIR PRODUCTION PROFITABLY

19 Along the value chain it is necessary to assist private entrepreneurs in identification of investment opportunities in primary, secondary or higher level value adding, for fresh and processed products in local and international markets, so that the demand for raw materials will be linked the output from our farms

20 Also, necessary support and incentives must be provided specifically for the food processing sector bearing in mind the perishability of the raw materials as well as food safety considerations

21 So we want to extend the shelf life of fresh produce? Establish post harvest handling facilities in every centre of production not 4, maybe 24 are necessary - with appropriate equipment according to crop type. Want to encourage higher level processing? Establish food parks, industrial estates dedicated to the food industry with common services and the necessary environmental quality.

22 Other areas of support include Technical support eg selection of appropriate technology, packaging etc Skilled workforce Linkages along the value chain Marketing Contract negotiations Standards and food safety Certification etc

23 In all of this, the necessary R&D support is essential, critically so. We undertake research at the line Ministry, at the two universities, we provide millions in financial support every year to CARDI as well as other national and regional organizations (TTABA, CARIRI, CFNI). And a limited amount in the private sector. For bench research as well as applied research. For farm production as well as along the value chain.

24 A Strategic Plan for the sector permits us to identify the critical programmes, projects and actions necessary to deliver on the identified goals and objectives identified. So that in the provision of any support system, whether it is infrastructure, technical, R&D, incentives etc. the specific actions could be identified and the necessary technical, financial and other resources quantified along a time line.

25 This approach permits all stakeholders to participate in a meaningful way in assisting in formulation of policies, programmes, projects and actions which will impact on their particular area of interest whether in supply of goods and services, production, value adding, marketing etc. It is also the best way for each stakeholder to appreciate their function within the supply chain and their position along a value chain, and to get their support. It certainly must be the next step in planning for the agriculture and food sector.

26 A Strategic Plan for the sector then allows the line Ministry to set its own strategic programmes in motion. Similarly, the agencies of the Ministry would be able to focus on the demand for their services and develop their own strategic plans. And last but not least, the private sector would be able to focus on the range of investment opportunities and translate the programmes into valuable goods and services. The public and private sector, working together, would then be in the best position to assist in realizing the policy and strategic objectives of the Government.

27 A note on utilizing linkages in creating consensus, synergies and efficiencies: There are several Ministries and agencies which impact directly and indirectly on the sector. The following is a partial listing: Ministries of Food Production, Land and Marine Resources (Planning, LWDD, Research, Agric Services, Extension & Training, Fisheries, Animal Prod & Health etc) Trade and Industry Planning and Economic Development Finance Legal Affairs (Consumer Affairs Division) Health Education Works Local Government Transport

28 Other agencies Private Sector (AETT, Agro Processors, Poultry Ass & other Livestock Orgs. Foodcrop Farmers Orgs. Fisherfolk Orgs, TTMA, Chambers of Industry and Commerce etc) NAMDEVCO, EMBD, ADB, TTABA, SIDC, LLPD, Commodity Boards UWI, UTT, CARDI, CARIRI, CFNI, CARICOM IICA, FAO

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