St. Lucia, one of the Windward Islands, covers a total land area of 616 km2 (238 mi2 ). Although, the agriculture sector continues to play a major role in the economy, the services sector with tourism in particular being the main economic driver, accounting for some 65% of the GDP, revenue, income and jobs. The agriculture sector contributes an estimated 3% of the GDP of which, banana production is the main contributor. Notwithstanding, the sector still accounts for a significant number of jobs, some 21% of employment. Given Government’s dependence on the banana industry which is challenged by volatile prices, and other external shocks there is the continued efforts to establish a new marketing and distribution system for non-banana agriculture.
Caribbean Agricultural Research and Development Institute (CARDI) Strategic Plan 2018-2022
St. Lucia is strategically positioned to be the hub of activities as it is the home of the OECS Secretariat. CARDI intends to compliment this direction by establishing a research facility comprised various labs, nurseries and a germplasm facility which will service the membership of the OECS. This will place St. Lucia as CARDI’s Research and Development Hub for the OECS. This also highlights the coordinating role CARDI will lead through St. Lucia to the rest of the OECS and in collaboration with the OECS Secretariat while remaining congruent with the Regional Plan of Action for Agriculture 2012 – 2022.
Apart from infrastructural capacity, CARDI will build the climate resilience capacity of St. Lucia’s agricultural sector by virtue of advancing climate resilient value chains for a range of commodities, with a focus on coconuts, roots and tubers and small ruminants. This will be in alignment with the overall plan of the OECS countries for agriculture in particular planning for climate variability and disaster. Roots and Tubers will be at the forefront with respect to a commodity oriented disaster risk 28 mitigation and risk resilience strategy and will straddles the widest possible range of root and tuber crops. Similarly, with an emphasis on food and nutrition security, CARDI will prioritize seven identified commodities with a view towards increasing national self-sufficiency in terms of agricultural production.
Download CARDI STRATEGIC PLAN 2018-2022
A. Barry Innocent
CARDI Representative / Scientist
Cul de Sac
CARDI Mailing Address
P.O. Box 971
CARDI Field Station
Phone: (758) 453-3317 (Office) / (758)453-3495 (Direct Line)
Fax: (758) 453-3495