MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE SHEDS LIGHT ON ADVERSE IMPACT OF LIVESTOCK DEATH ON ECONOMY

Basseterre, St. Kitts, February 6, 2020 (SKNIS): Minister of Agriculture, Honourable Eugene Hamilton, said that the death of livestock has a detrimental impact on the economy, while speaking at the launch of the Dermatophilosis Disease Control Programme on February 4 at the Department of Agriculture Conference Room in Laguerite, Basseterre.

Minister Hamilton noted that “last year, we lost some animals that we ought not to have lost” and that “people might see it as some animals died, [but] that is not the whole picture.”

“It caused economic loss for you and it caused economic loss for the country,” he said, highlighting the plight that farmers face with respect to their livelihood.

“When you do not produce food here, we have to import and when we import it, it is a drain on our foreign exchange,” he added.  “I don’t see your animals dying as your animals dead, I see the bigger picture and the impact it has on the overall economic well-being of the country.”

Furthermore, he said that, “this is why I urged last year for you to provide the data so that I can put something together to impress my colleagues in government to respond in certain ways.”

The loss of many farm animals last year came as a result of them falling prey to a resurgence in Dermatophilosis, a bacterial skin infection affecting multiple species of animals world-wide such as cattle, sheep, goats, deer and horses.