The Jamaica Agricultural Society (JAS) is suggesting that the government purchase crops from farmers to distribute to communities under quarantine due to the coronavirus.
Seven Miles and Eight Miles in Bull Bay, St. Andrew as well as Corn Piece in Hayes, Clarendon are now under 14 days of quarantine.
Health Minister Dr. Christopher Tufton announced Wednesday that the quarantine in Seven Miles and Eight Miles will end on Saturday, March 28. However, the measure will continue in Corn Piece.
Lenworth Fulton, President of the Jamaica Agricultural Society, has said food packages distributed by the Ministry of Social Security to these communities should include ground provisions, such as yams, cocoa and banana, from farmers who are seeing a downturn in the demand for their crops.
"We also think the fruits and vegetables that are now backing up on farmers purveyors should be purchased by the government for people who are in quarantine, those who are in prisons and hospitals, and children who are at home to boost the immune systems of these people who are mostly at risk," he suggested.
Mr. Fulton also urged the government not to import chicken meat so that local producers can supply the market.
He wants the government to also establish an Agricultural Fund, similar to the Tourism Enhancement Fund, which he said would benefit small farmers.