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Old October 7th, 2014, 11:21 AM
Jangle Jangle is offline
Reggae Prime Minister
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 18,421
Default Are we ambitious enough?


A farmer trudges through a river in Portland with callaloo for the market. Jamaica must mechanise its farming industry and capitalise on food-processing innovations. - Ian Allen/Photographer



John-Paul Clarke, Guest Columnist

This is an excerpt of the keynote speech delivered at the Calabar Old Boys' Association's annual dinner on September 27.We are in many ways prisoners of our colonial heritage. For the most part, we still farm in the same way we did centuries ago, and we have done little over the years to produce the processed foods that are increasingly valued by a busy world.
I recognise that we don't have the vast plains of the United States (US), for example, to practise farming on an industrial scale. But our researchers and engineers have not ever been challenged by Government or industry - and given the appropriate funding - to determine uniquely Jamaican solutions to the challenges of farming in Jamaica. We can certainly point to the innovations of T.P. Lecky, but what else have we done with regards to the application of science and technology to agriculture?

Dr John-Paul Clarke, a Calabar old boy and aeronautic scientist, is associate professor of aerospace engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology and a member of the NASA Advisory Council Aeronautics Committee, and the US Army Science Board.

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