In this section, you may find new materials that have been published on the topic of “Agribusiness development in SIDS: the potential of tourism-related markets” , since the date of the event. We continually select major new publications and articles that add up to the policy points discussed in this briefing.
Study on the State of Agriculture in the Caribbean
Caribbean Development Bank; 6/06/2019
The majority of the Caribbean Development Bank’s (CDB) Borrowing Member Countries (BMCs) have achieved key development milestones in the post-independence era, including relatively high human development indices and middle-income status. Nonetheless, BMCs continue to face significant socio-economic and climate challenges. These include low and variable economic growth; unsustainable debt and weak fiscal management; high unemployment; high prevalence of non-communicable diseases; vulnerability to the effects of climate change and natural hazards; environmental degradation; crime and increasing threats to citizen security; as well as persistent and extreme poverty and food insecurity. Most of these socio-economic and climate challenges bear distinctive gender imbalances. Today, BMCs face major challenges in their attempt to improve the competitiveness of the agriculture sector, including fisheries and aquaculture. Growth in agricultural productivity has been slow and the sector suffers from high trade costs and a low capacity to comply with modern food safety and quality standards. Consequently, the agriculture sector has been unable to adequately respond to rapidly growing demand for high-standard, agri-food products from the tourism, processing, and retailing sectors, in and outside the region. Instead, the growing demand in these sectors in the region is mainly fulfilled by imports. The region’s agricultural sector is also constrained by ever-growing pressure on natural resources and a high vulnerability to climate change.
Caribbean Must Reduce Its Multi-Million-Dollar Food Import Bill – Says OECS Director General
Business Focus St Lucia, 24/09/ 2018
The Director General of the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS), Dr. Didacus Jules, has signed an agreement with IICA to boost food production and safety in the countries of the region. Increasing food production in the Caribbean in order to reduce the region’s multi-million-dollar import bill, as well as decreasing poverty and improving nutrition for the local population, are some of the goals established by Dr. Didacus Jules as Director General of the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS). The head of the Caribbean regional integration mechanism identified the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA) as a strategic partner that can assist in achieving these objectives.
Hotels and Resorts in Fiji’s main tourism spend USD 74 million on fresh produce
An IFC-led study, in partnership with the Fiji Ministry of Agriculture (MoA) and the Fiji Ministry of Industry, Trade and Tourism (MITT), shows hotels and resorts in Fiji’s main tourism areas spent over FJ $74 million (US $36.4 million) buying fresh produce in 2017, with 48 percent of that spent on locally sourced items. The study, From the Farm to the Tourist’s Table, shows that while hotels have increased their use of local fresh produce since 2011 when they purchased as much as 80% imported produce, there is still room for improvement. Imported food items, such as vegetables, fruits, meat, seafood, and dairy, are a significant cost driver for Fiji’s hotels, accounting for FJ $38.5 million (US $18.8 million) each year. The study also reveals that Fiji has the potential to cut FJ $24 million (US $11.8 million) of its import bill by focusing its resources on growing or producing certain fresh produce locally.
Tourism as a Driver of Growth in the Pacific
Asian Development Bank (ADB), June 2018
Tourism in the Pacific is increasing and will be a key driver of economic growth in the coming decade. Yet despite more visitors to the Pacific, tourism growth is not inevitable for all countries in the region. This brief identifies the trends driving this increase. To secure and sustainably harness the benefits of this growth, this brief recommends that Pacific island countries create an enabling environment for tourism through interventions in four areas: tourism policy, strategy, and the regulatory environment; infrastructure; human resources; and product development and marketing.
Vanuatu Looks To Develop Agritourism Industry
Agritourism is a new vocabulary that is catching up fast because two important documents called ‘Vanuatu Agritourism Plan of Action’ and ‘Vanuatu Agritourism Plan of Action Implementation Plan’, are now plotting the way forward to achieve prosperity for the country through a solid partnership between Agriculture, Trade and Tourism. The documents were launched by the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Trade, Tourism and Commerce, Joe Natuman at Tagabe Agriculture Station yesterday. The Deputy Prime Minister said in his Ministry, agencies and partnership will focus mainly on increasing the production of value added products based on primary commodities that will be produced by agencies under MALFFB.
Jhannel Tomlinson: Feeding the Appetite for Sustainable Tourism
For the tourist hoping to experience authentic local cuisine on one of our famous golden beaches, they may be disappointed to know that only a small fraction of food in our hotels is provided by local farmers and fishermen, with the majority being imported from areas outside the Caribbean basin. Unfortunately, inconsistencies in quality and quantity of produce, natural disasters and limited access to inputs mean that our farmers are unable to meet the aggressive demands of the sector. However, despite these challenges, there is a way for farmers and foreigners to take advantage of the fruits of our lands. Agro-tourism, a niche but growing market within the tourism industry, offers tourists an authentic experience embedded in local food and culture and combines “rural aesthetics” with agricultural production into a dynamic tourist package. It gives the traveller the opportunity to delve into environmental, cultural and agricultural activities. And, often nestled in verdant areas of low commercial development, the farmer can also create revenue. This seeding of the linkages between agriculture and tourism can be an opportunity for farmers who have been “left behind” to utilise their livelihoods to the benefit of themselves and their communities.