Exploring the potential of networks for empowerment of Caribbean agricultural producer groups through learning and collaboration
Claudette de Freitas
Caribbean Agricultural Research and Development Institute (CARDI)
Caribbean Regional Fisheries Mechanism
Eastern Caribbean Trading and Development Company
Last modified: August 3, 2006
Presentation date: 11/02/2006 2:30 PM in ST Windsor B
Agriculture is still a major contributor to food and nutrition security, poverty alleviation and employment; even as traditional export earning commodities are losing their competitiveness. Thus producer groups in the Caribbean have had to embark on a major shift in their strategies to stay in business. Several new producer networks may revolutionize Caribbean agriculture if they can become sustainable.
The Caribbean Farmers Network (CaFAN) and the Caribbean Network of Fisher Folk Associations (CANUFO), have the potential to assist producers to collaborate for marketing or joint ventures, as well as increase communication between and among local, regional and international groups. It also provides a forum for accessing information, innovation and learning, so necessary if the groups’ efforts are to succeed.
Studies conducted among both farmer and fisherfolk groups identified major challenges of limited capacity, cultural and historic issues, scarce resources and a limited policy framework within which the groups can successfully function.
This paper will share experiences of how some farmer and fisherfolk associations are overcoming these challenges with the assistance of selected donor and technical support agencies including the Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation, Caribbean Agricultural Research and Development Institute, and Caribbean Regional Fisheries Mechanism.