NCU, Mandeville, Jamaica - Northern Caribbean University has signed an $18.2 million dollar Memorandum of Understanding for the implementation of the In-Vitro Propagation of Irish Potato Seed programme.
The MoU was signed between Northern Caribbean University, NCU, the Ministry of Industry Commerce Agriculture and Fisheries, the Jamaica Social Investment Fund, JSIF, and the Scientific Research Council, SRC.
Under this 12 month agreement, NCU is expected to “maximise production of Irish potato in central Jamaica. We are also going to be working closely with the farmers to assist them as best as possible.” Dean of the College of Natural and Applied Sciences, Allied Health and Nursing at NCU, Dr Vincent Wright.
The institutions will use the laboratory equipped through the programme to help facilitate the production of some 800, 000 Irish potato tissue culture plantlets with micro tubers within a year.
“I welcome this initiative because I think this will set us on the right path, and I want this as soon as possible so that we can save the US$4 million that we have to spend to import Irish potato.” Minister of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries, Karl Samuda.
He says this project is set to save the country millions of dollars which will drastically reduce the import bill on Irish potatoes. He was speaking at the MoU signing in Kingston on January 25.