Hoteliers wanted for Agrofest
WITH THE STAGING of Agrofest two months away, chief executive officer of the Barbados Agricultural Society (BAS) James Paul says the organisation will be trying to get more hoteliers involved.
Thousands of people attend the annual exhibition which highlights livestock and vegetable farming as well as other products, and the BAS boss said there were opportunities for more hotels to see what was available in the farming community.
“Agrofest is a way to let people know what is available, even a hotel, and that’s one of the things we’re trying to look at now. We’re trying to see how we can interest more hotels in it, to let them see Agrofest as a means of going out there and shopping for new agricultural products that can be available or can be made available to them. That is something that we need to pay attention to,” he told BARBADOS BUSINESS AUTHORITY.
That apart, Paul said that the exhibition, which will observe its 11th anniversary come February, has sparked more interest among consumers.
“More people do get involved in farming because of Agrofest. We can see definitely there’s a heightened interest in farming, immediately after Agrofest. People do call in, they ask questions on how they can get involved. That is something that is happening,” he said.
“What I really think though, is that we need to also pay attention to the period where we showcase the sector, we showcase the linkages. It is an opportunity for farmers to also bring out their best and to show buyers of agricultural produce what is available and from the livestock people as well. It offers us an opportunity to benchmark the products that we have especially in the livestock sector.
“For instance, the Barbados blackbelly sheep I think in terms of quality has improved over the years largely because of the fact that people are paying greater attention to the breeding of the animal and making sure the breeding practices are more correct. So, in this regard, Agrofest does serve a purpose,” Paul said.
He suggested what livestock farmers needed to do was implement what they had learnt related to preparing their animals for the exhibition and crop farmers should ensure that the produce they had available could be “consistently available throughout the year”.
He added that during Agrofest, patrons “come to see what is available” and might want to purchase afterwards. (Green Bananas Media)