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#406584 - 04/29/11 11:48 PM 42nd National Agriculture and Trade Show
Marty Offline
Patrick E. Jones

The 42nd edition of the National Agriculture and Trade Show got underway on Friday afternoon in Belmopan. Official ceremonies included the public recognition of the junior, woman and senior farmers of the year. The Junior farmer of the year for 2011 is Fernando Orellano, while Maria Vasquez is the woman farmer of the year. The senior farmer of the year is Edgar Tzib. They will be receiving their prizes on Saturday morning. Guest speaker at the opening of the Show, Senator Godwin Hulse noted that despite having some of the best agricultural lands, Belize has been maintaining a huge trade deficit for decades now. This he explained sees Belize exporting about four hundred million dollars worth agricultural produce; but at the same time importing almost twice that amount yearly. Minister of Agriculture Rene Montero in his address, said that agriculture continues to be a pillar of the Belizean economy and that the weekend event will serve to showcase the hard work that goes into keeping the nation fed. Montero said that the theme: "Agriculture – securing the future for a better Belize" encapsulates his government's vision for food security, poverty reduction and rural development targeting the farm family. "As the Minister of Agriculture I am very pleased to be presiding over this celebration of the 42nd national agriculture and trade show," Montero said. "Over 42 years the show has grown and evolved both in size and location," he said. He ended his speech by saying that his tenure as Minister of Agriculture "has been very challenging but very fruitful as the sector continues to be the pillar of the Belizean economy and I am confident that it shall remain so for the unforeseeable future." The weekend event will feature various agriculture displays and competitions, highlighting the work that the nation’s farmers have been doing for the last twelve months.

#406885 - 05/04/11 09:31 AM Re: 42nd National Agriculture and Trade Show [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline

“Agric’” Pulls Big Crowd

But on result we do have is the number of persons who attended the 2011 National Agricultural and Trade Show. It may have been one of the hottest weekends of the year, but close to 24 thousand Belizeans attended.

Organizers say That's close to nine thousand on Saturday and fifteen thousand on Sunday - which is just a little above last year's figure…

And one of the top entertainment items at the fair is the rodeo and we leave you with a few highlights of that this evening.

Channel 7

#406888 - 05/04/11 09:36 AM Re: 42nd National Agriculture and Trade Show [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline


The 42nd annual National Agriculture and Trade Show was a complete success according to the National Committee. Chairman of the Committee Eugene Waight says they are satisfied with the turnout.

Eugene Waight – Chairman, NATS Committee

“On Saturday we estimated about 9,000 which is about a thousand more than 2010 and for the Sunday we were just almost 15,000 persons were out on the showground that again is comparable to the year before. We were very happy with the turnout. We expected a little less persons because of the crisis situation and just coming out of the Easter. We hope to generate some funds of course. We use the funds generated to improve the showgrounds, if you have noted over the years we have built some benches. Last year because of Richard we had a lot of the booths blown down so we need to do repairs. I am more than sure that whatever we make will not be enough to do the repairs for the infrastructure that we would like to but we would try to use the money strategically to do some of the improvements that we have set forth to get done.”

Despite the huge turnout, Waight says they encountered challenges along the way but they will work on solving those problems for next year’s event.

Eugene Waight – Chairman, NATS Committee

“The challenges were parking and people squatting in front of other people who had permanent booth or had paid for a spot. We always say the show takes on a life of its own when it has started, sometimes if you don’t get to some of the squatters on time it is a challenge to move them even with the police. That would be two of the areas that we really need to work on for next year in fact I already have some concrete ideas to the committee that we will be working on this year to ensure that it is reduced. One thing I did not mention during the interviews is that we were very glad that the weather cooperated with us. It wasn’t extremely hot, it was relatively windy and today we have a lot of rains in Belmopan so I think we were very lucky and blessed.”

It is estimated over twenty four thousand persons visited the show grounds over the three day event.


#407350 - 05/10/11 01:27 AM Re: 42nd National Agriculture and Trade Show [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline
Agriculture Show - A Hot Success

April has been an unusually hot and dry month, but more than 24,000 Belizeans braved the heat and dust to hunt for bargains and other deals and special offers at this year’s annual National Agricultural and Trade show in Belmopan over the Labor Day weekend from April 29 - May 1.

There were the traditional displays of prize cows and calves, for beef and dairy, top Brahman bulls, horses and other livestock and other agricultural produce, but this year’s show was about trade.

Quality Poultry chicken and Running W brand sausages and processed meats, both from the Cayo district, have become household names. Both companies had booths promoting their products with fairground special prices.

Agro-processing has become big business, as another household name – Western Dairies, showed with its range of milk products, ice cream, yoghurt, cheeses, bottled juices and even bottled water! Caribbean Pride citrus juices from Citrus Products of Belize and Bradley’s “Cool Delight” fruit drinks were also there to give them a run for their money.

At the main entrance, fair-goers were greeted by the Belize Telemedia booth, which offered deals on cell phones beginning at $199 in a choice of models and manufacturers and more sophisticated touch-screen phones starting at $299. Not to be outdone, Smart Speednet also offered similar deals on its line of models at their booth just across the way.

Several cellphone importers, such as VIP Wireless and Cellular Plus, also offered deals on more high end models, such as the Apple iphone 3G and 4G. Other importers also exhibited a range of household electrical and electronic appliances such as flat screen TVs, fans, stereos, irons and electric cookers.

Homemakers looking for innovative ways to decorate their homes needed look no further than the Medina’s Furniture and Woodcrafts booth also near the main entrance, offered fine mahogany furniture, upholstered lazy-boys and sofas, tables, and other decorative items made from the finest of Belizean hardwoods. Leewen Furniture also showcased their range of products.

The Grace Kennedy Belize booth offered many bargains on it line of Grace food products, and the agents for Softy toilet tissue also offered special deals, as did the San Cas group of companies at their booth.

The local banks also offered their full range of services, so if you wanted to put your money down on a new tractor, pickup or Harley Davidson motorcycle, they were there to provide the financing.

Besides the usual fairground rides, there were many other diversions for young and old alike such as horse-back riding, a petting zoo, go-kart riding, and the annual rodeo.

There were booths promoting social services such as the Community Parenting Program and the National AIDS Commission aggressively pushing their campaign for Belizeans to get tested and to know their HIV status.

Taiwanese entrepreneurs also offered decorative potted house plants and cactuses, clothing, handmade jewelry, snacks, and refreshing cold tea, soya milk, milk tea, noni juice, and other fruit juices.

Belizeans also had a chance to learn about a range of new products and services at the Mexican Pavilion, sponsored by the Mexican Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Agriculture, SENASICA, and the state governments of Quintana Roo and Yucatan.

The “Guayaberas Palacio” company presented traditional guayabera shirts, while the dairy company “Productos Lacteos y Derivados La Caribeña” offered an assortment of Mexican cheeses, such as the Oaxaca, Ranchero, Panela, Cotija and Chihuahua. The “Hidroponia Maya” company specializes in growing habanero peppers, cucumber and sweet peppers through hydroponics which nourishes green plants without soil.

“Materias Primas SAHI” offered their range of cleaning items and automotive chemicals; and the companies “Fiestas Mexicanas” and “Kin Kix” showcased their piñatas and other party favours and accessories.

Dr. Gabino Galvan, a visiting expert from the Agricultural Health Authority of Mexico (SENASICA), made a special presentation on animal diseases to livestock producers and other interested parties at the OIRSA conference room at the show grounds on Saturday, while The Mexican Ministry of Agriculture (SAGARPA) also provided phytosanitary information about the requirements for exports to Mexico.

The British High Commission also had a booth promoting UK trade and investment partnerships, and fair goers could sample British sausages and beers at another booth.

BATSUB may be down sizing its operation in Belize, but it had a booth displaying the services they offer.

There was also a strong presence of Belizean security forces patrolling the fairgrounds to ensure that all went well and that the fair goers could enjoy themselves without incident.

The Reporter


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