Bio-fortified rice harvested to bring relief to farmers in Guyana

The Bio-fortified rice variety (Photo via Guyana Chronicle)

In 2019, we made the decision to do this work in the bio-fortified rice. We are very pleased to go back to the Caribbean Week of Agriculture this year in The Bahamas to highlight that we have that…the importance is with your partnership.Wilmott Garnett, IICA Country Representative

(Guyana Chronicle) WHILE increasing food production in the agricultural sector is in line with plans to be sustainable and resilient, the bio-fortified rice variety with nutritionally enhanced zinc, which is anticipated to provide farmers and Guyana with enormous relief, was harvested on Saturday.

This significant project forms part of an effective partnership between the Guyana Rice Development Board (GRDB), the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA), Fondo Latinoamericano para Arroz de Riego (FLAR), CARICOM, among others. The ceremony was hosted at Karmananda Basdeo’s plot at Lesbeholden, Black Bush Polder, Region Six.

Minister of Agriculture Zulfikar Mustapha underscored that this variety of rice will provide various opportunities to the farmers, given that the variety’s nutritional value exceeds that of conventional rice.

Officials at the rice field: second from left are Mr. Joseph Cox, CARICOM Assistant Secretary-General, Economic Integration, Innovation and Development; 3rd from left, Mr. Shaun Baugh, Programme Manager, Agricultural and Agro-Industrial Development, CARICOM Secretariat, 4th from right, Mr. Zulfikar Mustapha, Minister of Agriculture of Guyana; 3rd from right, Mr. Wilmott Garnett, Country Representative, IICA; and, right, Ms. Milagro Matus, Deputy Programme Manager, Agricultural and Agro-Industrial Development, CARICOM Secretariat

He emphasised the significance of this new type for the general public, farmers, and the nation.

“We are launching a variety of rice that will shortly become an official variety for farmers in our country, so that they can cultivate it. This variety of rice will attract preferential prices around the Region and different parts of the world.” Minister Mustapha added that this undertaking was made possible because of the investments made over time to equip the GRDB’s rice research facility with the relevant facilities.

Read more at: Guyana Chronicle

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