Ngum, Permanent secretary number 2 at the Ministry of Agriculture has said that
the horticulture sector continues to be a major and important contributor to
Gambia’s economic growth and development, accounting directly for more than 4
percent of the Gross Domestic Product–GDP- while contributing to 80 percent of
Gambian rural workforce.
Delivering a statement on behalf of the agriculture minister at the opening of the 2018 national horticulture show at Abuko, Madam Ngum said government will continue to support small scale farmers to improve production and productivity. The event was organised under the theme: Enhancing small-scale women farmers through horticulture commercialization.
According to her, the horticulture sector plays a significant role in meeting national objectives of employment creation, food and nutrition security, poverty eradication and industrial transformation.
She noted that the national horticulture show would provide an opportunity for farmers, traders, processors and other service providers in the horticulture value chain sector to exchange valuable technologies and establish business linkages. She encouraged farmers to take the opportunity and advantages of the show to learn new technologies and build lasting bridges for increased horticulture crop productivity and income improvement.
She opined that the theme of the event would boost the spirit of transforming the country into a rapidly industrialised middle- income nation as envisaged in the national development plan.
She used the opportunity to urge players in the sector to ensure adhering to the set market standards for horticultural products and enhance enterprises by venturing into value addition to realise higher returns. She also thanked the NEMA project for their continued support in conducting the important national event.
Banky Njie, business and development officer of the NEMA Project said one of their strategic objectives is to assist women and youth in the rural parts of The Gambia to develop their skills and organisations to take advantage of improved agricultural technologies and effective production services.