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Jamaica continues to spend less on food imports

Published:Sunday | November 27, 2016 | 11:59 AM

Agriculture Minister Karl Samuda says Jamaica continues to spend less on food imports in the first five months of this year.

Between January and May, Samuda says the country’s food import bill fell by US$2.4 million or 0.7 per cent.

He says for the same five-month period, domestic food export increased by 19 per cent to US$13.2 million when compared to the corresponding period last year.

The agriculture minister says the gains resulted from initiatives such as the Eat Jamaican Campaign, the Import Substitution programme and the Onion Development programme.

Despite this, he says the gap between Jamaica’s food import bill and exports is still too wide.

Samuda’s comments came in a message read by the ministry’s Chief Technical Director Stephen Wedderburn during an exposition held in Kingston last Friday, marking the 13th anniversary of the Eat Jamaican Day initiative.