Senator the Honourable Kazim Hosein, Minister of Agriculture, Land and Fisheries with Chairman of the ADB Mr. Sekou Mark presenting seedlings to passerby.
On Wednesday 4th May, 2022 the Agricultural Development Bank of Trinidad and Tobago (ADB) launched its Seedling Drive initiative to distribute over 20,000 seedlings nationwide. This initiative was geared towards encouraging families and communities to grow their food through backyard gardening.
Senator the Honourable Kazim Hosein, Minister of Agriculture, Land and Fisheries delivered the feature address where he commended the ADB on its Seedling Drive initiative. He referred to the initiative as a step in the right direction that will benefit the nation immensely. The Honourable Minister expressed, “with current global, regional and local economic challenges, the blending of strategic planning with experience is now required. A need to generate greater interest in the sector by attracting new entrants and supporting existing participants to work in integrating primary agricultural production into the day to day lives of all citizens.”
Also present at the launch was Dr. John Alleyne, Special Advisor (Agriculture) to the Prime Minister. Dr. Alleyne informed that ADB’s Seedling Drive aligns with Pillar 2 of the Government’s latest policy document, the Road Map to Recovery, with a major underpinning “Making Food Security a Reality in Trinidad and Tobago”.
Chairman of the ADB, Mr. Sekou Mark identified ADB’s essential role in supporting local food production and food availability. With an Asset Base of approximately $670M and annual loan disbursements to the Agricultural Sector averaging over $100M, the ADB is resolute in its mandate to support and develop activities along the agricultural value chain.
The Corporate Manager-Finance & Administration, Mr. Gleason Garraway in the capacity of Acting CEO, delivered the Welcome Remarks, where he encouraged families in various communities to eat local and adopt the ‘Farm to Table’ initiative of the Ministry of Agriculture, Land and Fisheries.
ADB’s Seedling Drive initiative was extended to its other four Branch locations, along with drive-by caravans in Carenage, Aranguez, Marabella, Palmyra, Felicity, Wallerfield and Valencia via its Mobile Banking Unit (MBU). Persons received seedlings inclusive of ochro, chive, tomatoes, pimento, celery, lettuce, cauliflower in the various communities.
Also present at the launch was Senator the Honourable Avinash Singh and Permanent Secretary, Ms. Susan Shurland of the Ministry of Agriculture, Land and Fisheries.
The ADB continues to work alongside farmers, fishermen, and all agri-entrepreneurs within the agriculture sector.