Friday 30th June, 2017 marks a milestone achievement for the Agriculture Department here on St. Kitts as the “Eat Local Day” event celebrates its tenth year of great success under the theme “Support Our Farmers, Eat Local”.
With the influx of fast food chains in St. Kitts, there have been numerous concerns within the Agricultural & Tourism Sectors as to whether local cuisine will still maintain its appeal among citizens. Questions have also been raised as to whether or not the demand for local commodities would be outdone by the rising demand for foreign produces.
Since its debut in June 2007, the annual tradition of the “Eat Local Day” which is an island-wide food festival has created an avenue in which the local farmers, fishermen, agro-processors and food craft citizens are celebrated and the value of local production once again is brought to life as a primary medium through which the issue of food security is at the forefront. The continuation of the “Eat Local Day” on an annual basis is direct proof that the policy makers within the Agricultural Sector are dedicated to developing local food production and consumption as an integral part of our culture.
The fact that the Eat Local Day has survived for a decade sends a resounding message that the Department has achieved some of its main objectives. The need to revive the dying trend for local taste among our nationals and promote less dependence on imported foods through increased local production acts as a clear indication of the event’s successes. As an offspring of the “Eat Local Day” event, Restaurant Week’s main ingredient this year is Yam. As such, caterers will be displaying their creativity by preparing a variety of sumptuous local dishes from this local ingredient.
Although the Eat Local Day Food Festival is hosted on a particular day in the month of June, given the importance linked to the event, other businesses in the form of local restaurants and hotels are propelled to lend their support to this initiative. Additionally, one of the top communication giants on island, Digicel, has again stepped forward as one of the primary sponsors of this signature event.
The evidence is there that “Eat Local Day” will continue to be promoted within the Federation due to the value that it has derived for our local farmers, businesses and citizens on a whole. This year’s event will again be hosted at the Independence Square on June 30th, 2017 from 11:00am and is expected to be quite memorable as a ceremony will be incorporated. At this ceremony, all participants who have contributed to the success of the event over the years will be recognized. Representatives from the Ministry of Agriculture will also deliver brief remarks to highlight the value of the event’s contribution and its benefits for future generations.
An invitation is therefore extended to locals and visitors alike to join us at Independence Square where the atmosphere will be a festive one. See you there!