Find Agriculture expertise in Bahamas, The
Agriculture, forestry and fisheries contribute only 2 per cent of The Bahamas’ GDP. Consequently the country imports around 80 per cent of its food stuffs. Agriculture is invariably on a small-scale level, mostly producing for domestic consumption. Only 1.4 per cent of land area was recorded as used for agricultural purposes in 2009, mostly on the outer islands, whilst the industry accounted for 3 per cent of total employment. Most of the large commercial farms are situated at Andros, Abaco and Grand Bahama, producing mainly vegetables and citrus crops for the North American market. The primary products are poultry, winter vegetables and citrus fruits, with exports concentrated on grapefruit, limes, okra, papaya, pineapples and avocado. The most lucrative agricultural export is grapefruit, generating US$459,000 in 2010. The primary destinations for exports from the islands are the USA, Japan, the United Kingdom and elsewhere in the European Union. Around 90 per cent of the agricultural land in The Bahamas is government owned and under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries. The government aims to use the land to aid the growth of the economy and encourage less dependence on the tourism sector. Additionally, The Bahamas Agricultural and Industrial Corporation is responsible for stimulating, expanding and promoting small and medium sized businesses, therefore facilitating employment and import substitution.
The government envisions that the industry can grow and expand through reforms in land tenure, application of appropriate incentives and investment in post-harvest storage. Additionally, there are plans to improve productivity with better processing and packaging facilities, better management of resources, the introduction of labour-saving devices and strengthening of the policy framework. The government has also expressed a need for the creation of an enabling macroeconomic environment and incentives to diversify the existing harvesting methods.
The Bahamas Agricultural and Industrial Corporation is encouraging the development of the industry through a number of initiatives. This includes the possible expansion of greenhouse technology, publishing a list of incentives for the agriculture sector, a review of training for agriculture initiatives and a review of public and private funding for the agriculture sector.
|Agriculture organisations in Bahamas, The|
|Department of Agriculture||
|Ministry of Agriculture and Marine Resources||