Jamaica Agriculture Society (Jamaica)
The Jamaica Agricultural Society (JAS) formed in 1895 under the instruction of the then Governor General of Jamaica, Sir Henry Blake to stimulate interest of all categories of farmers in the island in agricultural pursuits, and to establish a forum where all farmers could meet, discuss their problems to initiate plans, elect officers and to do all other things necessary for the welfare of the farming community. It is the oldest most deeply rooted organization in rural agricultural development in the Caribbean.
In 1941, the JAS was incorporated as a private voluntary organization. Presently, the JAS is an agency of the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries and serves as an umbrella organization consisting of varied affiliated commodity boards and associations to include: Jamaica Citrus Growers Association, Pimento Growers Association, Cocoa Industry Board, All Island Cane Farmers Association, Coconut Industry Board, All Island Banana Growers Association, Coffee Industry Board, Jamaica Livestock Association, Ministry of Agriculture Export Division and Sugar Industry Board.
The Jamaica Agricultural Society also has established parish offices island-wide. Each Parish has within its structural framework an Association of Branch Society (ABS) that consists of branches within the farming communities. Each ABS is governed by the President and the Executive Body elected by the farmers for representation in the decision making process of the Society.
The core of the Jamaica Agricultural Society in representing the farming community is:
To foster domestic agricultural production for Jamaican farmers.
Support research and development in new methodologies and farming techniques in agricultural production and output.
To encourage "best practices" in agricultural development.
To foster efficiency and effectiveness in agricultural production, output and distribution.
Support ventures in agri-business as a means of increasing value added within the agricultural sector.
Here are some other facts about the Jamaica Agricultural Society:
The activities of the Society include performing field days/farmers’ training across the parishes geared at developing the farmers’ expertise in farm management and best practices.
The JAS implemented an Agricultural Produce Receipt Book System to enable traceability in the sale of agricultural produce under the National Praedial Larceny Prevention Programme.
Under the leadership of Senator Norman Grant as President, the ‘Eat Jamaican’ Campaign was launched in 2003, under the patronage of then Governor General, His Excellency the Most Honorable Sir Howard Cooke, proclaiming November 25th annually as ‘Eat Jamaican’ Day – sensitizing Jamaicans of the need to ‘grow what we eat & eat what we grow’.
Organizers of the Denbigh Agricultural, Industrial and Food Show since inception, as well as involvement in parish shows (such as Hague Show, Agrofest, St. Mary Expo and Montpelier Shows), that are geared at promoting agriculture at its best.
Instrumental in having the month of April recognized and celebrated annually as “Farmers’ Month”.
The JAS formed the Jamaica 4-H Clubs as the youth arm in the agricultural sector in April 1940.See more