全球粮食安全与营养论坛 (FSN论坛)


    • Importance of aquaculture in developing countries

      Aquaculture -- also known as fish or shellfish farming -- refers to the breeding, rearing, and harvesting of plants and animals in all types of water environments including ponds, rivers, lakes, and the ocean.  Researchers and aquaculture producers "farm" a variety of freshwater and marine species of fish, shellfish, and plants.  Aquaculture produces food fish, sport fish, bait fish, ornamental fish, crustaceans, mollusks, algae, sea vegetables, and fish eggs.[1]

      Aquaculture’s importance in the sustainability and its role in employment and food security are not to be understated in developing countries. Despite its significant growth rate (8.8 %) per annum, according to the “National Policy on Inland Fisheries and Aquaculture (October 2012)” there exists a huge potential for the exploitation of Guyana’s fresh water resources. “Aquaculture has proved itself to be an economically successful industry ever since it was first introduced and there are no signs that is will be weakening any time soon.  Meanwhile as the world population continues to grow, thedemand for fish increases annually, but at the same time capture fisheries have been unable to boost their total harvests since the late 1980's.”[2]

      On the other hand, currently there exists a decline in the capture fisheries production globally. While capture fisheries in Guyana has experienced growth the focus needs to shift away from capture fisheries production to one of growth and sustainability most notably aquaculture. The high costs associated with the regulation, enforcement and overexploitation of a natural resource is a sub optimal use of our resources. It is of paramount importance for a solution which can achieve a pareto improvement for society to be pursued. The solution posited is aquaculture due to its high growth potential, sustainability and minimal environmental effects.

      The importance of aquaculture in developing countries has mainly three dimensions; employment, nutrition and trade. Aquaculture provides employment for a growing number of persons and is not only restricted to the impoverished segments of society . It should be noted that the role of women has evolved from their traditional role in the household to being a part of the production and packaging processes of the industry. This ties into the millennium development goals (MDGs) more specifically the aspect of empowering women. The role of aquaculture is important in boosting the production of fish for domestic consumption as demand globally has risen resulting in higher prices. Addressing food security aspects such as availability and access to food across the population are important in reducing poverty and hunger. Finally, the last dimension trade is of utmost importance to developing economies. The transformation of a primary sector to a manufacturing sector, i.e. the fostering of value added production is crucial to economic development if developing countries are serious of becoming a developed country one day.

      In conclusion, the lack of awareness and focus on aquaculture in comparison to the capture industries of the world can lead to devastating environmental and food security issues in the near future. With a growing demand for sea food products there can only be two scenarios: aquaculture becomes a major industry or overfishing prevails and the world is left worse off.


    • How to coordinate activities so that Partnerships and cooperatives are effectively implemented?

      Fish stocks are becoming limited and the climate is changing. These two major problems raise a high level of concern for both people and governments of developing countries. People in developing countries depend mostly on the fishing industry to provide food for them. Fish provides a source of protein, it is cheap and families could get easy access to it. Small-scale fishers, fish workers and their communities also others who depend on fish for their nutritional needs as well as all of us who enjoy eating fish and who believe in equitable development and a sustainable use of our global resources. Therefore we all have a stake in the future of smalls-scale fisheries – let’s work together to ensure that they have a secure and sustainable future.[1] Thus in order to sustain fish as a major competent of food security the following steps will have to be taken. First activities should be allocated to partners based on their mandate, capacity, experience and proximity to the target clientele/beneficiaries. This will increase chances of the benefits trickling down to the rightful targets and reducing the disappointment of the SSF Guidelines being another good policy document with no traceable outputs at community level. Second, raise awareness of the problems and steps that could be taken to solve the problem. Third, provide proper cataloguing and careful documentation to the public through media outlets such as television programs, radio, websites, newspaper and fliers as to the plans that will be undertaken to solve the various problems pertaining to the fishing industry. The plans must be well detailed, outlining clearly the step by step process that will be undertaken to promote sustainability in the fishing industry. The fourth and final step is to educate fish workers about the advantages of enhancing the sustainability of the fishing industry. If people don’t understand why they must work together to sustain the fishing industry then all plans made will ultimately fail, persons will become uninteresting and lose focus because they do not see the advantages the plans have for the environment and thus the plans will be of no benefit to them. This is the most important step in sustaining the fishing industry.     

      [1] Joshua Cinner and Tim McClanahan, (2013), Promoting collaborative management of small scale fisheries in the tropics.


      How can progress in implementing the SSF Guidelines be measured and reported in a useful way?

      In order to measure how the SSF guidelines would have been effective, targets can be set to show how food security would have increased or how poverty would have been reduced as a result of the guidelines. These performance indicators can be either qualitative or quantitative but mostly they should be qualitative since it easy to measure a quantitative change than a qualitative one. In addition there should also be a means of verifying that the actual changes are occurring. This verification can be done using surveys so that the data obtained in the survey can be compared with past data to show if food security would have improved or if poverty would have been reduced. Here fishery products per capita nutritional intake can be done. A disadvantage of this method is that this type of information is usually gathered through a House Budget Survey which is done every few years. Also an alternative to waiting on the next House Budget Survey is conduct a survey of your own which can be very expensive.

      Additionally, in an earlier post we noted that one of the responsibilities of the CNFO is managing the sustainability of the fishing industry through NFOs which works in collaboration with fisherfolk organizations in each country. While addressing fishers’ complaints on a timely basis such as that of safety at sea and ensuring that sustainable fishing practices is done, management is also a key issue.  Such management can include the collection of data regarding the average amount of fishery resources extracted on a regular basis, say monthly. These NFOs should however ensure that small scale fishers are encouraged and educated on how to do some form of bookkeeping on, for example on a daily basis, of the quantity of fishery resources they would have sold. Being able to gather such information from these fishers would allow the NFOs of a country to have a better estimate of the improvement of the fishery sector by assessing the returns, thus the livelihood of small scale fishers and the nation as a whole.



    • How can partnerships be fostered and strengthened to include the ‘voices of the marginalized?

      It was noted in our previous contribution to this discussion that the fisheries sector adds a seemingly small percentage to the GDP. However the sector also plays an important role in being able to help in ensuring food security and nutrition as outlined by the SSF Guidelines. The issue at hand is how can those involved in small scale fisheries be furthered developed given that these fishers inclusive of women may lack resources to continue undertaking fishery as their main form of livelihood.

      The World Fish Center in Malaysia in a study of the role of Public Private Partnerships in Small-Scale Aquaculture and Fisheries concluded that some major factors that can contribute to successful PPPs include a supportive government PPP strategy, good leadership and management within the PPP, and transparency.[1] These very strategies can be enforced since it will ensure that communication will likely be enhanced allowing small-scale fisheries to be more able to voice their concerns thus ensuring sustainable fisheries in the long run.

      Implementation of the SSF Guidelines in relation to this aspect needs the government to play their part. This would entail the full adherence to the laws regarding fisheries in a country. In Guyana for instance fishery legislations are not fully adhered to. There may be some fishers who may for example who may be operating without a license. The strength of a successful PPP needs the support of a government who will at all cost enforce fishery laws since the private sector will of course have no interest in being involved in a partnership where in the near future there are no longer fishery resources available. Laws regarding protected species for example should be enforced.


      In addressing the issue to include the “voices of the marginalised”  farmers can be represented through co- operatives to voice their issues at the relevant government entities .In Guyana the ministry of Agriculture has a department of fisheries located within the Ministry of Agriculture. For the Public Private Partnership to be successful activities need to be co ordinated by government .Furthermore, government needs to provide the relevant information necessary to promote growth within the industry. The mobilisation of farmers through co operatives can spur the growth necessary due to greater bargaining power in the representation of the interests of the farmers in contrast to individual farmers seeking partnerships with government .It can be posited if individual farmers engaged in private public partnerships with the government they can gain an “unfair” advantage over other fisher men due to asymmetric information and more resources. In conclusion, partnerships can be fostered and strengthened through an entity such as a co operative representing the interests of the fisher folk forming a collaboration with the government to promote  efficiency in the sector


    • ·         What are your experiences of addressing these types of challenges and what have been successful or unsuccessful strategies and approaches?

      The Fishing industry in Guyana according to Minister Dr. Leslie Ramsammy while addressing the Fisher  Folk convention which was conducted recently at  the Guyana International Convention Centre Liliendaal, It  is an important and significant industry and contributes to the overall development of Guyana. The industry’s success can be characterized into some key indicators. These are as follows. In terms of food security he stated that fishing industry provides a relatively cheap source of animal protein in the Guyanese diet, an essential element in meeting dietary needs, in meeting the caloric intake and in meeting the balanced meal criteria.”   He further discussed the role of fishing industry in job employment in local markets and its contribution to the country’s foreign exchange rate and export levels. These are just a few to which growth in any developing country can be determined. However, there are other indicators on which success are determined.This, seeks to emphasize on the accessability , stability of pricing and ready availability of nutritious food across the populace.

      Fishing existed over 1oo years ago in mostly rural areas of Guyana which resulted in a cultural fishing tradition in many households especially those of the Amerindians ethnicity  and as a form of dietary protein.  According to the Fisheries Act, the industry in the earlier days encountered operation challenges in the administrative funding due to institutional weaknesses .Thus, the industry suffered the inability to fathom growth and further strategize on data collection, policy making, implementation, and monitoring growth in the economy.

      In the practical case of success in Guyana’s case was not possible and was rather stifled in the past because of miscommunication and lack of information and state failure that existed in this industry. From this point and onwards in this post our group seeks to address how these challenges were addressed through policy reforms, strategies and approaches used by government officials in accordance with the SSF guideline to rekindle the growth that was visible and continues to grow moderately in long run.

      In the beginning of the late 198o the fisheries Act was reconstructed and two organizations were formed to overseer the fishing industry. These were Guyana Fisheries Limited (GFL) and Guyana Libya Fishing Company (GLFC) that dealt solely with fishing purposes. Today these organizations no longer exist and they are quite a few new organizations including the Guyana Fishing Association, Ministry of Fisheries, Crops and Livestock  (MFCL),  all under the state and with one of the main objective which is the provision of essential services  e.g. marketing information to the fishing industry. On the other hand, and similarly SSF in Guyana are viewing this industry not as just a mere family tradition and a form of income but as a widely, cheap, and nutritious form of eradicating hunger and promoting not only growth of the economy but longevity of one’s life.  Given the awareness of both parties, i.e. the government and small fishers, especially now with the state there will likely be a continuous flow of information and experiences will be transcended through these networks to facilitate the involvement of  Small Scale Fishers and implementation of the SSF in policy reforms. 

    • In this post we seek to address the question "What best practices with regard to communication would you recommend for SSF Guidelines implementation at local, national, regional and global level?" from the perspective of Guyana and the Caribbean.

      Guyana’s fishing industry sustains a small portion of the population’s livelihood by the provision of employment and as a major income earning economic activity. It contributes an approximation of 3% to the country’s gross domestic product. Fish consumption is an important source of protein in one’s diet especially in Guyana with an average of 57 kg per capita in 2011. Ensuring sustainability in the fish industry is therefore of prime importance in all areas thereby ensuring food security. The prawns industry for example failed in the 1990s due to overfishing.  The focus hereon examines how communication practices between the fishing industry and fishery organisations and the government can forester growth at local, national, regional, and global level.

      The fishing industry mostly operates on commercialized basis and a traditional one as well in which the small scale fishers are involved. Aquaculture farming also plays a significant part in its contribution to the overall fish production in the country. It was noted that the fish industry continues to expand with revenues amounting to $24M in 2012 compared with $7M in 2011.[1] Even though this seems to be a significant improvement, these fishers are often left without a voice. Communication should thus be enhanced so as to maintain the fishing practices that these fishers undertake, to address problems encountered and to ensure that fishing legislations are made aware to and adhered by all fishers involved in the industry. For the SSF guidelines to be effectively implemented the various current fishing organisations should performing their responsibilities. The Ministry of Agriculture stated that the Fisheries Department maintains sustainable fishing levels of seabob resources by collaborative efforts with the Guyana Association of Trawler Owners and Seafood Processors (GATOSP).  Communication via such an organisation in developing countries on the local level and national levels as a whole ensures that small scale fisheries are monitored thereby securing a sustainable fish population for future protein consumption. These organisations can easily monitor the amount of fishery resources being caught and prevents any wastage in resources. As such, fishers are less likely to encounter problems of overfishing and thus secure their livelihood.

      Maintaining food security in the region is also key importance in the regional, i.e. the Caribbean region, and global levels. In the Caribbean communication practices among nations is done for example through the establishment of the Caribbean Network of Fisherfolk Organisations (CNFO). This body aimed to create a network by having countries establish national fisherfolk organisations (NFO) within their country. These NFOs will strengthen the institutional capacities of fisherfolk organisations within countries and ensure proper management of the fishing industry within the country is undertaken.[2] The CNFO acting as an overseer will further ensure that communication of relevant information is done through the respective NFO networks. The Caribbean as a whole is dependent on the fishery sector for their food security and nutrition needs and contributes an average of 7% of some country’s GDP.[3] Thus with the NFOs, small scale fisheries throughout the Caribbean will be better managed and information in relation to new technologies for example will be circulated throughout the region and enhance the development of small fishers in the entire region. Similar practices can be implemented on the global level.


    • Food security

      “Food security is not in the supermarket. It's not in the government. It's not at the emergency services division. True food security is the historical normalcy of packing it in during the abundant times, building that in-house larder, and resting easy knowing that our little ones are not dependent on next week's farmers' market or the electronic cashiers at the supermarket.” – Joel Stalatin.

      The World Food Summit of 1996 defined food security as existing “when all people at all times have access to sufficient, safe, and nutritious food to maintain a healthy and active life”. Commonly, the concept of food security is defined as including both physical and economic access to food that meets people's dietary needs as well as their food preferences.[1]

      According to the World Health Organisation (WHO); food security is built on three pillars which encompass (i) Food availability (ii) Food access (iii) Food use.

      In the context of this post the group will focus primarily on the role of government in securing sustainable fisheries. Firstly, the role of government is to correct market failures arising either through an externality or provide a public good in the situation of a missing market.

      Fishermen generally utilize a common pool resource; the oceans, rivers, tributaries etc. to engage in their economic trade. Their activities impose a social cost which is not accounted for in their private cost .As a result, we can see them exerting negative externalities onto society and eventually making themselves worse off. Moreover the tragedy of commons may prevail if government does not intervene to prevent this market failure. Because of this it will ultimately be the role of the government to implement certain fees or limit the seasons of fishing in order to sustain the industry, which can be done through the enactment of certain laws and restriction on fishing zones.

      A second role of Government entails the provision and dissemination of technical information to farmers so as to raise awareness of negative externalities and ways of cost minimization which can result in a Pareto improvement.

      In addition, there exists opportunities for the scope of a public private partnership which will be addressed in a subsequent post.


    • What are some of the challenges facing social relations and networks in food and nutritional security

      Social relations among farmers provide many important services and promote food security. In relation to this forum the group would like to focus on the manner in which credit has influenced food security. It is a widely accepted fact that while small farmers are important in a world where the population is growing they are also hampered by a variety of problems which may include: price volatility and limited access to credit and insurance.  In Guyana, it can be observed that the rural area which is home to many farmers has a closely knit community in which farmers engage in barter whether it’s in the form of gifts or loans. Small farmers are assumed to have a preference for or are likely to pursue the acquisition of funds via the informal market. The informal market in this instance refers to money lenders in the form of a neighbor, a familiar trader, or family. It is also assumed that small farmers prefer not to use the financial institutions (formal market) because  they lack sufficient collateral. Thus, the general consensus is that small farmers prefer to utilize the informal market because they may be unable to access loans through the formal financial institutions due to a lack of capital and also because they may be perceived as high risk clients thereby attracting higher interest rates.

      Small Farmers due to financial constraints are unlikely to hold liquid assets and more likely to hold assets such as a land in a nearby community or livestock. As a result, when farmers need credit they are most likely to acquire funding from money lenders within the rural community. However informal markets also have their shortcomings in that farmers are exposed to the exploitative behavior of the “loan sharks” since they are likely to pay an above market interest rate or farmers may be coerced into purchasing the trader’s input only .These exploitative behaviours may only serve to impoverish small farmers and this creates a serious challenge for food security.

      It can be observed that governments have experimented with the use of varying policies to promote food security. It is also well agreed upon by all that the credit policy is the best alternative because it does not inject any form of distortions within the market .The importance of credit is not to be understated since it promotes the use of capital and inputs by farmers .To remedy this credit problem donor agencies and government have utilized programmes which are supply led credit policies which are unsustainable because they have a high default rate and poor supervision of the loans. Governments invest heavily in these programmes because small farmers generally have a slow adoption rate of technology.

      On the other side of the coin, the problem of fungibility exists whereby farmers utilize the credit but not for its designated purpose. For example, the farmer may divert the money from increased farm inputs to increased food consumption. This may result in slower growth in the agricultural sector and may even put programmes and financial institutions at risk. In other studies done the market driven approach has been highly successful as adduced in the case study of Mozambique.

      “impressive progress in rural production and development has clearly been achieved. With market-driven approach and an improved policy environment focused on small-scale producers, the process of rural recovery has started. The total production of cereals increased from 239 000 tons in 1992 to 1.8 million tons in 2001, and the north and the centre of the country now regularly generate surpluses for export”[1]

      In conclusion, the group believes that a public private partnership between financial intermediaries(whereby the financial intermediaries supervise the farmer's allocation of resources) and the government(provide technical expertise and subsided loans) can aid in the alleviation of these problems faced by farmers. 


    • Hydroponics in Guyana ensuring food security through environmentally friendly agricultural techniques

      “One people One nation One destiny”

      In their drive to create vibrant housing schemes the Government of Guyana has chosen to use arable agricultural lands along the Low Coastal Plain. As result, the farming of produce has an increased opportunity cost. Thus, for farming to remain a successful venture and a crucial one necessary for population growth and sustenance the use of various agricultural techniques can be ventured / explored.

      One  agricultural technique is hydroponics which remains a viable alternative as the coastal plains are being “developed” with real estate. In the low coastal plain various agricultural techniques must be pursued to ensure soil conservation of the remaining arable lands. Hydroponics is the answer because it does not require the use of arable land.  On the other hand, it requires a saltine mineral solution to support the growth of crops instead of soil (“soiless cultivation”).Thus, it is a good substitute with the demand for housing increasing on the low coastal plain.It is evident that farms can gravitate towards a less developed area which the hydroponic technique can strive and produce fresh produce year round.


       Hydroponics should be considered because there exists many factors which adversely affect the production of crop and food production in open field areas:

      ·         Increasing ultraviolet radiation.

      ·         Decreasing fresh water supplies and water quality.

      ·         Increasing top soil erosion and soil degradation.

      ·          Increasing resistance of insect pests and plant diseases to traditional chemical controls.

      ·          A convergence of natural cycles leading to extreme weather conditions.[1]


      The need to conserve arable land on the Coast is of utter importance since most crops that are exported must leave via Georgetown therefore it would be more cost effective for farmers to have their farms near the coast to reduce transportation cost. With hydroponics cash crops that were once grown using arable land can now be grown using air and a mineral water solution on any kind of flat surface.  Because of this, useful agricultural lands are now available for crops such as rice which cannot be grown using “soilless cultivation”.

      Moreover hydroponics has an additional environmental benefit- it reduces the chances of water pollution. The sources of water pollution are usually associated with farming activities originating  mainly from fertilizers, pesticides and herbicides with the run-off from these chemicals.As a result water ways surrounding farmlands are contaminated.  When hydroponics is used instead this “run-off” is avoided because all the necessary minerals and nutrients needed to support plant growth is administered directly to the plant root. The use of hydroponics in the cultivation of crops eliminates the chances of E-coli contamination since this issue is usually associated with improperly composted manures and irrigation water flowing through nearby cattle farms and hydroponics requires no irrigation and manure given that this method utilizes soilless cultivation.

      Although hydroponics may use additional minerals in cultivating crops, a smaller dosage is required because these minerals are applied directly to the root. As a result farmers have cost savings and fewer chemicals are applied producing  natural crops. Through this method chemicals such as herbicides are rendered as being superfluous therefore these toxic chemicals are not released into the environment. In addition the use of pesticides is reduced since less pests attack the crops because most pests are found in the soil. If farmers wish to completely eliminate the use of pesticides when using soilless cultivation they may use integrated pest management technique, a method that promotes the use of a balance of beneficial insects that are natural predators to destructive garden pests.[2]

      The conservation of the limited amount of fresh water available on Earth is of vital importance because without any fresh water agricultural activities cannot take place and as a result no food will be produced. On the other hand, hydroponics utilizes approximately 10-15% of the water a farmer normally uses for an open field situation to produce a similar amount of crops. The reason for such a high reduction in water usage is due to the  recycling of water which is delivered to the roots as opposed to the excess water used in irrigation with the traditional methods.[3]

      In Guyana hydroponics is likely to play a pivotal role in ensuring food security since it is allows for the production of cash crops in a cost effective manner.Consequently, guaranteeing affordable access to food for persons living in Guyana. Furthermore, farmers benefit because the yield of their crops are likely to increase significantly when compared to traditional methods .


    • “According to Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs Theory, with respect to psychological (basic) and safety needs of a human being, once individuals have basic nutrition, shelter and safety, they attempt to accomplish more.” --- Abraham Maslow

      According to the World Health Organization,Nutrition is the intake of food, considered in relation to the body’s dietary needs. Good nutrition – an adequate, well balanced diet combined with regular physical activity – is a cornerstone of good health.”

      With reference to the preamble and definition above, one can conclude that basic nutrition (on the aggregate level) will more likely develop a very productive labour force, thus the country’s development.  However, due to the rise of the fast food industry in Guyana it is evident that people are more concerned with the convenience of getting food faster rather than the most  important point, which is, proper nutrition. Most individuals in society presently rely on processed or packaged “less nutritious” foods because of its low time consuming characteristics to prepare. It is therefore of importance to note that the lack of a healthy labour force is likely to cause a decline in productivity and a loss of efficiency.

      The world today is faced with its own unique challenges. As highlighted before in the forum, poverty eradication and a growing population approximated to exceed 9 billion by the year 2050, creates a sense of urgency on the matter of food security and nutrition.

      As stated by Thomas Malthus, “That the increase of population is necessarily limited by the means of subsistence, that population does invariably increase when the means of subsistence increase, and, that the superior power of population is repressed, and the actual population kept equal to the means of subsistence, by misery and vice.”  However, Malthus ignored one key element which has seen the exponential increase in population today. Technology has allowed mankind to produce more at faster rates to feed our growing population.

      From an economic perspective, nutrition is integral to individuals and the population as a whole since it has a positive correlation with population growth. When inspecting the Solow Growth Model (Macroeconomics 6th Edition, N. Gregory Mankiw), it can be clearly noted that growth in the capital stock, growth in the labour force, and advances in technology can significantly boost the productive capacity of a nation. In essence, in magnifying the point of population growth which is synonymous to growth in the labour force the focal point of the private sector along with civil societies should definitely be pointed in the direction of proper nutrition because through proper nutrition, only then a massive labour force can be developed thus economic growth and development. This can be substantiated from the following statement

      “the improvement of average nutritional status in the poorest countries will generate a positive social effect way beyond its economic effect”-(does nutrition enhance economic growth? The economic cost of hunger by  Xiaojun Wang and Kiyoshi Taniguchi)[1]

      (It makes no sense that the population is growing and individuals lack proper nutrition since poor nutrition can lead to reduced immunity, increased susceptibility to disease, impaired physical and mental development, and reduced productivity. Basically this population will be a liability to the labour force.)

      Solutions to the problem of nutrition and food security are numerous. However, we shall concentrate on civil society and the private sector.  We shall examine the roles they play in the solution to the problems associated with nutrition and food security.

      “Civil societies also known as non-governmental organizations (NGOs) — are critical actors in the advancement of universal values around human rights, the environment, labour standards and anti-corruption. As global market integration has advanced, their role has gained particular importance in aligning economic activities with social and environmental priorities”[2]-

      The role of civil society in solving the solution encompasses sensitizing the public on nutrition to lobbying governments to engage in policy making which can promote the production of highly nutritious food. To illustrate, civil society can persuade governments to subsidise technology used on farms.  As a result, farmers can benefit from the use of these technologies and increase production.  Hydroponics is a viable alternative agricultural technique as it is cheaper and delivers nutrients directly to the plant root.  This encourages efficiency and is a simple process for farmers to learn and adapt. However, like most developing countries farmers in Guyana are an aged population, risk averse and may be reluctant to engage and learn a new technique. By creating an attractive policy the farmers can benefit significantly through hydroponics and thus promote social mobility among small farmers. The need to lobby for nutrition specialists through health centres, television programmes and school programmes can all aid in educating the population on the importance of a balanced diet. When an individual works hard to attain their money they should be able to spend their money on proper nutrition as opposed to “fast food” which  is likely to lower productivity and cause illnesses such as diabetes thereby reducing the individual’s welfare and in the long run resulting in a premature death.

      On the other hand, the private sector which is more profit oriented can seek to exploit the opportunity to invest in developing large agricultural lands for food production.  As in the developed world farm lands are concentrated mainly among large scale producers since an incentive exists for farmers to invest more into the accumulation of stock and land.

      Collaboration of the private sector and civil society will likely promote growth of small farmers through access to credit, grants and advice. This is likely to translate to greater production as farmers are now better able to access the resources they need to expand their enterprise.

      The documentary Life and Debt by Stephanie Black highlighted the flaws in economic policy which was supposed to encourage economic growth and reduce poverty.  However, the policies failed as the IMF imposed certain restrictions and the domestic economy was not allowed to flourish. Thus, protective barriers and subsidies can arguably be utilized by developing countries to cultivate an efficient agriculture industry.  As in most cases developing countries are at a disadvantage or face unfair competition by the developed countries because they have heavily subsidized agricultural industries and they are exceedingly larger, hence more efficient and control a greater part of the world market.  Therefore our objective will be to explore possible strategies which the private sector and the civil society can be involved in, most importantly how both of these bodies can collaborate to make hydroponic farming and thus the agricultural sector in Guyana one of pre-eminence.   

      Richard Leo

      Devon Seeram

      Tiffany Adams

      Romel Bheer 

      Venetia Smith

      Samantha Thierens