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Jan 8, 2016

Chief Agriculture Officer Says Local Farmers Control Vegetable Market

Roberto Harrison

Harrison says that while there are approximately ten acres awaiting harvest in the north, there are other communities producing vegetables in various parts of the country.  The issue, he concludes, is one of supply and demand, despite farmers controlling upwards of ninety percent of the market for carrots.

 

On the Phone: Roberto Harrison, Chief Agriculture Officer

“The farmers were complaining that they were not able to sell their production in the last couple of days, you know.  We do know for a fact that the carrot producers in the Orange Walk District come mainly from the San Carlos area.  We have on our records that, in fact, seven acres were planted and to be harvested between December fifteenth to the end of January and another additional three acres would have come in about now.  Based on other producing areas, as well, we know that the Cayo District also produces carrots mainly in San Antonio, the smaller Mennonite communities, Springfield and the Barton Creek area, San Antonio and La Gracia.  Based on those two production areas we know that there’d have been a local supply, a weekly local supply of about, on average about thirty to thirty-five thousand pounds per week.  We also know that the weekly demand based on the historical data that the national demand that is for carrots is about forty-two thousand pounds per acre, on a weekly basis.  We also do some coordination as well with respect to the phasing in of local production and phasing out of the imported carrots.  We know that we phased out last week a small amount of about three thousand pounds that was allowed and that was the last of the imported carrots.  Other than that though I would not be able to explain why the farmers haven’t been able to sell their carrots because, in fact, they would have had about ninety percent, ninety-five percent maybe of the local demand for carrots in the country, you know.”

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