Belize - Belize News - - Great Belize Productions - Belize Breaking News
Home » Agriculture, Art & Culture, Environment, People & Places » Over 34,000 People Attended National Agriculture & Trade Show
May 2, 2023

Over 34,000 People Attended National Agriculture & Trade Show

The three-day trade show that Belizeans across the country look forward to in Belmopan is now history, but even under the sweltering heat, this year’s attendance surpassed last year’s. The Ministry of Agriculture reports that over thirty-four thousand persons visited the event at the National Agriculture and Trade Show Grounds at the entrance to Belmopan. This was a seven percent increase over last year’s numbers. And while agriculture was the order of the day, there was also a healthy showing from the commercial sector, with businesses offering tempting deals on gadgets and the like. News Five’s Marion Ali brings you a look at what this year’s ‘Agric’ in this week’s edition of Kolcha Tuesday.


Marion Ali, Reporting

For decades, around this time of the year, the National Agriculture and Trade Show has been showing off Belize’s best crops and byproducts, creating an opportunity for farmers to offer sweet deals to buyers. The show did not disappoint. There were livestock and crops on display, and deals on fruits, vegetables, ground foods. In some instances, there were fruits that outgrew their expectations, like this pumpkin that weighed over a hundred and fifty pounds. Then there were the new innovations that some people find interesting, such as the Minister of Agriculture, Jose Abelardo Mai.


Jose Abelardo Mai

Jose Abelardo Mai, Minister of Agriculture

“If you look around, there are new bio-products. That’s the direction people are going to, instead of agro inputs, you look at the bio inputs. I’m very interested in that. I like to see new varieties of products. It’s just a very interesting beans variety that CARDI has -fortified variety. We look at the new technology used to control insects – CARDI again. So there’s new, a lot of interesting things to see out here.”


Another transformation that ‘Agric’ has undergone over the last decade or so is the inclusion of commercial lending institutions. The Development Finance Corporation was a big attraction, and Marketing and Communications Officer, Hipolito Bautista was on hand to explain.


Hipolito Bautista

Hipolito Bautista, Marketing and Communications Officer, D.F.C.

We support the event because this is where our customers come. People congregate, Belizeans congregate from across the country, and D.F.C., we serve the entire country of Belize. We provide financing, as you know, for home financing, business financing, very important, M.S.M.Es, right? And particularly, I want to touch on a product that we’ve developed to make it more easily accessible for micro and small because we know collectively they churn and they drive this economy, right, so, empowered business loans for women of any age as well as men between 18 and 29, the young men. We have financing available from $2, 500 up to $5, 000. They can access easily. They no longer need a guarantor. All they have to do is sign a commitment to repay.”


Minister of Agriculture, Jose Abelardo Mai shared that including the lending institutions as a part of the event is a game-changer for farmers because they have always had difficulty accessing agricultural loans.


Jose Abelardo Mai

“Financing for agriculture is always a challenge, one, because it’s a risk. The interest rates are always high, and two, some banks are not even interested in lending the farmer. But as you can all see that food security is very important. Food sovereignty is very important, and so the banks also react to the demands. So, if we are promoting our food, we are promoting food security and food sovereignty, then the banks take it up too. And then they say, well, I want to be a part of this. I have loans available for the farmers at such a rate.”


Of course, the trade show, similar to an expo, featured what a lot of people also flock the event to see – deals on the latest gadgets and electrical appliances. There was no shortage of cell phones, laptops and tablets. Carlos Perez represented Cellular World at the event.


Carlos Perez

Carlos Perez, Marketing Supervisor, Cellular World

“The main purpose of the National Agriculture and Trade Show promotion that we have is to get the lowest prices that we can to make sure that we create that impact with the customers and ensure that they’re getting the best value for what they’re paying for, regardless of the item that they’re buying.”


Whatever you attended the event to see or to purchase, chances are you got it at a price you couldn’t get at any other time or at any other event than at the National Agriculture and Trade Show. Marion Ali for News Five.

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.

Advertise Here

Comments are closed