Farmer spray-paints bananas to keep away thieves

BY KIMMO MATTHEWS Observer staff reporter

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

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TIRED of being preyed on by praedial thieves, a St Catherine farmer has found an ingenious way to thwart crooks targeting farms in her community of Lime Tree Grove.

The female farmer, who wants to remain unidentified, has been spray-painting the bananas on her farm red.

Apart from bananas, she also plants calalloo and other vegetables, but has not yet found a way to mark the other crops.

"For years I have been coming under pressure from thieves; dem nuh stop plague mi farm and mi get fed up," she told the Jamaica Observer last Friday.

"That is why I took the decision to start spray-paint my bananas," she shared.

And her ingenuity is apparently working as thieves have so far stayed away from her farm, she said.

Yesterday, a source at the Ministry of Agriculture said that the paint on the bananas is not a health threat.

"My information is that the external spray painting, as described, should not pose a health hazard," the source told the Observer in response to an e-mail question.

Up until recently, green bananas fetched premium prices of as much as $250 per dozen as a result of a shortage triggered by Hurricane Sandy last October, which wiped out most of the crop in the traditional banana-growing parishes of St Thomas, Portland and St Mary.




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