THE Rural Agricultural Development Authority (RADA) has trained more than 14,000 farmers in the last five years on best practices in livestock and crop production.
Delivered through its extension service, training aims to improve sustainable production and to ensure that international protocols are maintained.
Livestock specialist at RADA Maxine Brown said that having one livestock officer in each parish has been impactful.
"That officer is able to bring a bit more focus to livestock in the parish to see what the needs of the farmers are and to try to plan projects and programmes to assist their development and their competitiveness," she said.
She said the expansion of extension services began in 2010, and there have been more than 39,000 farm visits within the same five-year time span.
"We also had to adapt to the situation with COVID, and we did an online training session with international partners, training our small ruminant farmers in the management of internal parasites," she said.
"They also got certification in a procedure we call FAMACHA, which is basically the procedure of looking at an animal's eyelid and use a chart to determine if you need to deworm the animal or not, because we realise that there is a violation in terms of farmers abusing dewormers," Brown said.
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