|Evergreen Ranch to start cattle farm |
By Stacy Moore Thursday, November 24 2011
A FOURTH large farm at a cost of approximately $4 million was launched in Barrarackpore.
The commercial large cattle farm consisting of 261 acres of land will facilitate 200 cattle for the production of “high quality beef” to be consumed locally and exported internationally.
The $4 million- price tag will be for the development of the pastures and building of the infrastructures at the designated area along Cotton Road Monkey Town.
The farm entitled “Evergreen Ranch Ltd” follows the launching of three other farms overseen by the Ministry of Food Production, Land and Marine Affairs. The other farms were launched in Edinburgh for tomato production, Cunupia for rice and a mixture of crops in Orange Grove.
Delivering the feature address at the Cotton Road ranch, Food Production, Land and Marine Affairs Minister Vasant Bharath said the real issue we are faced with was how many people across the world and not just in Trinidad and Tobago had access to nutritious food to maintain their lifestyle.
“Every ten percent increase in the price of food world wide ... 40 million people into poverty,” he said.
Bharath said the people in Haiti have resorted to a mixture of something with of mud and cassava to sustain themselves.
“I am not saying for a moment that we in Trinidad and Tobago will get to that state. I am saying that it’s a signal for us to be able to put our house in order and for far too long we have spoken of the issues of food security in Trinidad and Tobago. For far too long we have spoken of diversification of our economy away from oil and gas and for far too long we’ve done nothing year after year we would listen to the same broken promises from the now opposition,” the ministers explained.
Bharath emphasised one of the main reasons of his ministry is to produce food security for the people. “Every single thing that every agency does that falls under the Ministry of Food Production and Land Marine must funnel back to one common goal and that goal is to produce food security for the citizens of the country. And the reason we get up for work in the morning must be for that, there can be no other reason once we agree that is what we want for Trinidad and Tobago,” he said.
He said the only thing driving the inflation rate back up is the cost of imported food.
“We need to reduce our consumption of foreign exchange. Last year we imported over four billion dollars worth of food and we been doing, so for four years, much of which we can grow right here.” he said.
Bharath said Trinidad and Tobago imports 90 percent of the sheep and goat from places like Australia and Canada.
“Of the 4,000 tonnes of beef we consumed last year less than four hundred was produced in Trinidad so this is why I employ this effort.” the minister said.
In giving an overview of the company Evergreen Ranch, director Simone Awardy said it was the vison of her father Aziz Awardy to establish a cattle farm of this nature.
“Our objectives are to produce a high quality beef that can be compared with the universal beef standards and to create long term sustainable employment.”Awardy said. The director of the company also explained the ranch would also introduce new methods of cattle farming and processing .
“ From the pastures we would implement the latest systems in tracking herd and cattle performances.” she added .
Awardy further explained another main objective would be to produce grass- fed beef in the most natural environment.
“The intention of Evergreen of Evergreen Ranch is to operate a beef cattle farm in compliance with the Environmental management Authority (EMA) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) standards,” he said.