Jamaica: $18-m project to cut need for imported Irish potato seeds

The Government has pumped more than $18 million into the establishment of an in vitro propagation of Irish potato seeds programme in a bid to reduce the country’s dependence on imported seeds. The Government is also hoping that the programme will increase the yields of Irish potato farmers across the island. The project, which is a component of the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries’ National Irish Potato Development Programme, will be implemented with the assistance of the Jamaica Social Investment Fund (JSIF), the Scientific Research Council (SRC), and the Northern Caribbean University (NCU). Under the project, three laboratories at the SRC, the Government-operated Bodles Research Station and the Northern Caribbean University will be propagating first-generation Irish potato seeds through tissue culture. More