Technical Services

The Technical Services Directorate is responsible for directing and coordinating the activities of the technical divisions within the Ministry.


Mission

Our mission is to lead the dynamic transformation and modernization of the Agricultural Sector by being the authoritative source of policy advice. The Directorate makes recommendations for the adoption of policies, strategies, goals and plans that promote market-driven and priority-based research and development programmes, which will increase competitiveness and sustainable output in the Sector. Agricultural health and food safety, trade facilitation, as well as conservation of biodiversity are central to the Directorate's activities that seek to enhance the transformation process.

 


The objective of the Research and Development Division is to generate cost-effective technology for improvement of agricultural production. The Division operates four sub-programmes, namely: Livestock Research and ImprovementCrop Research and DevelopmentPlant Protection; and Post Entry Quarantine - with a view to applying modern technology to increase production and productivity.

A new thrust in Research and Development (R&D) has led to collaboration with international and regional entities involved in agricultural research. This is to effect greater efficiency and global competitiveness. To achieve these objectives the Ministry of Agriculture has embarked on a programme of resuscitation and upgrading of the three research stations at Bodles in St. Catherine, Orange River in St. Mary, and Montpelier in St. James.

Unit Functions


Livestock

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Crop Research

Provide agronomic and technical information on various crops by

  • Seminars and publications
  • Individual farm visits
  • Provide planting material to farmers and companies involved in crop production
  • Provide soil-nutrient (N.P.K.) and pH diagnostics
  • Provide in-servicing training to CARDI and other agencies, with respect to the use of Caribbean Seed and Germplasm Resource Information Network software.

Plant Protection

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  • Pest identification
  • Diagnosis of plant health problems
  • Advise on plant protection matters

Regulatory Apiculture

  • Apiary inspection
  • Apiary registration
  • Exotic Bee Pest Control

Animal Nutrition and Feed Evaluation

  • Feed evaluation of ration formulation
  • Pasture agronomy and forage utilization

Animal Production Systems Research

  • Development of fodder management systems to optimally exploit the productive potential of livestock species.
  • Optimal employment of supplementary feeds based on an ever-increasing component of indigenous ingredients.

The Veterinary Services Division oversees national health, animal status and welfare through its various services offered island wide. The Division operates a Diagnostic Laboratory services for the protection of the livestock industry; it certifies the health of animals; it is involved in the import/export inspection of live animals, meats and meat products; and it offers artificial insemination services for cattle, pigs and goats. The Ministry has revamped the Artificial Insemination Service (AIS) with the acquisition of a Liquid Nitrogen Plant for the safe storage of semen.

Diagnostic Laboratory Services

  1. Microbiology
  2. Parasitology
  3. Virology
  4. Leptospirosis (testing)
  5. Serology
  6. Pathology
  7. Meat Residues
    1. Antibiotics
    2. Pesticides

Health Certification

  1. Live animals
  2. Meat, Fish and products of fish
  3. Meat Processing and Dairy Plants

Artificial Insemination:

  1. Bovine
  2. Pigs
  3. Goats

Inspection of Live Animals, Meat and Meat Products

  1. Airports
  2. Seaports
  3. Development of systems for the utilization of locally produced services of energy and protein or non-ruminant
  4. Use of rearing systems to improve animal productivity through reduced environmental stress and improved efficiency of fuel utilization.

Laboratory

  1. Proximate analysis (feed and forage samples)

The Fisheries Division is responsible for the conservation and sustainable utilization of the Jamaica Fisheries resources in a manner that ensures optimum social and economic benefits to Jamaica. This is achieved through proper fisheries management involving research, monitoring of environmental quality, education and training, enforcement, licensing and registration, data collection and community outreach. The two major branches are Marine Capture and Aquaculture. The major programmes of the Fisheries Division are as follows:

Marine Capture Branch

  1. Beach Development
  2. Exploratory fishing
  3. Biological catch and effort data collection
  4. Resources assessment and development of fishery specific management plants.
  5. Lobster Assessment Project (CIDA/CFRAMP)
  6. Conch Assessment Project (CIDA/ACADIA University).
  7. Licensing and Registration of fishermen and fishing vessels.
  8. Administration of credit facility schemes.
  9. The provision of support services eg. distribution of outboard motor fuel to fishermen.
  10. Fisheries infrastructural development and information dissemination.
  11. Ongoing evaluation of the fisheries sector.
  12. Development of contemporary comprehensive fisheries laws and policies.

Aquaculture Branch

  1. Oyster culture programme
  2. Pond construction for fresh water fish
  3. Fingerling Production (Tilapia, Carps and Collosoma).
  4. Extension training to farmers of inland fish production.
  5. Research and Development.
  6. Fish inspection and quality assurance.
  7. Support Services (rental of fish farming equipment)

The Plant Quarantine Unit falls under the Technical Services Directorate of the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture & Fisheries. Plant Quarantine is Jamaica’s first line of defence against the introduction of exotic pests and diseases. This Unit is mandated to ensure that only the highest quality, pest free cut flowers and fresh produce are exported from and imported into the island.The Unit functions under the legal framework of the Agricultural Produce Act 1926 and the Plants (Quarantine) Act, 1993.

The Unit has its head office at 193 Old Hope Road, which serves as the overall administrative office for the two export complexes, one at the Norman Manley International Airport and the other at the Sangster International Airport. The Plant Quarantine Unit is headed by the Chief Plant Quarantine/Produce Inspector, with support staff consisting of: two Senior Plant Quarantine/Produce Inspector, two Export Complex Managers, and other staff members.

Basic Role:

  1. To ensure that harmful pests and diseases do not enter the country.
  2. To ensure that only the highest quality, pest free produce is exported from the country.

Legislation:

  1. The Plant Quarantine Act.
  2. The Agricultural Produce Act.

Basic activities relating to importation are:

  1. Issuing of permits for the importation of agricultural produce.
  2. Inspection of shipments of agricultural produce entering the country.
  3. Inspection of incoming passenger baggage for the presence of prohibited material.

Export requirements:

  1. Exporter must have a certified packing house.
  2. Exporter must be registered by JAMPRO.
  3. All exports must be inspected and certified by a Plant Quarantine/Produce Inspector.
  4. Exports must be properly prepared and packaged.

Project Management and Coordination Division is a subgroup of the Technical Services Directorate in the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture & Fisheries. Our mission is to increase the performance levels of projects, which will contribute to the realization of the Ministry's objectives. The main role of the Division is to coordinate, monitor and control the development and operations of all Internal and locally funded projects falling under the Agriculture Ministry and all its agencies.

Objectives

  1. Identify areas that will yield optimum social and economic benefits through unilateral, bilateral and multilateral agricultural projects in the Ministry within the financial year.
  2. To ensure that performance levels of projects correspond with expenditure levels and projects’ targets according to their Annual Work Plans
  3. To detect negative trends in projects’ components and initiate corrective measures/actions to restore faculty components on the right path
  4. To liaise with funding agencies and executing agencies to ensure timeliness, adequacy of resources and support for projects’ development and implementation.
  5. To administer the work of the Project Management and Coordination Division

Support Functions

  1. Monitor project implementation against expenditure
  2. Accounting support to new and ongoing projects
  3. Administrative support to start up new and ongoing, and bring closure to existing projects
  4. Liaise with funding and executing agencies
  5. Evaluate technical and professional consultancies
  6. Implement projects that may lose staff prior to their closing date
  7. Assist with projects’ development
  8. Evaluate project performance
  9. Prepare and/or review Terms of Reference for consultancies
  10. Prepare and/or review strategy documents
  11. Review and approve project contracts
  12. Assist with Budgets/Operational plans and Operational manuals
  13. Assist with preparation of contract documents and evaluation reports