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Aug 22, 2019

Ministry of Agriculture Assessing Impacts of Deadly Drought in the North

The deadly drought in northern Belize is crippling farmers and by extension certain sectors of the agriculture industry. Corn farmers and soybeans producers in Blue Creek Village in the Orange Walk District are feeling the financial pinch; they stand to lose over two million Belize dollars. Farmers who would usually harvest hundreds of acres of corn, this year will harvest a lot less which translated to hundreds of thousands of dollars in losses.  The drought is so dire that the current production of soybeans will not be able to satisfy the country’s demand, leading to the need for importation. The Ministry of Agriculture is aware of the situation and today C.E.O. Jose Alpuche says that research is being conducted at the moment to properly assess and address the impacts caused by the short-term drought.


On the Phone:  Jose Alpuche, C.E.O., Ministry of Agriculture

“We are conducting a survey right now and it will take a little time because we are trying to do something detail based on the farming methods, what is being farm and what stage of planting they are and what they have actually loss. That network is being done as we speak. We do know from the outset that we will have shortages in some grains, soy and corn. We are quite concern about the impact as it relates to livestock and feed material going into next year. So we are doing a proper assessment so then we can make proper recommendations for addressing the needs of those affected.”


Hipolito Novelo

“Sir, one of the grain farmers for soybeans that because of the drought they will be force to import soybeans.”


On the Phone: Jose Alpuche

“Yes we agreed that that will be the case. It is not the first time that we will import soybeans. You will recall earlier this year there was a call that soybeans was not being bought in the domestic market. We met with producers and we solved that problem. From earlier this year we had to allow some imports into the mills. We tend to allow the mills to import because they import only what is actually needed, that there is no over stocking of supplies.”

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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