October 21, 2023:- The car park of the Southern Academy for the Performing Arts (SAPA) in San Fernando, was transformed into a market with farmers and agroprocessors exhibiting and selling their products, as the World Food Day National Committee of Trinidad and Tobago (WFDNCTT) held its Food Heroes Exhibition in commemoration of World Food Day 2023 earlier today. This, the second Food Heroes Exhibition, was held under the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) World Food Day Theme: ‘Water is Food, Water is Life – Leave no one behind’.
This Exhibition, according to Chairperson of the WFDNCTT, Ms. Teresa Rosemond, aimed to “give recognition to persons the Committee has termed ‘Food Heroes’, who sustainably plant, harvest, produce, develop, and transport food to ensure that we, the citizens of Trinidad and Tobago have access to affordable, safe and nutritious food”.
In her opening remarks, Ms. Rosemond noted that the World Food Day Theme “not only highlights the importance of sustainable practices, but brings to the forefront, issues of climate change, water scarcity and food shortages”. She also highlighted that “our farmers, fishermen and entrepreneurs play a vital role in maintaining our food supply. By supporting them, we can create jobs, stimulate economic growth and reduce our Food Import Bill.”
Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Agriculture, Land and Fisheries, Mr. Farook Hosein delivered the feature address on behalf of the Honourable Minister Kazim Hosein, stating that the celebration of World Food Day “serves as a testament to the collective action we are taking to address the challenges of hunger, malnutrition and poverty; and also as a global platform to raise awareness of the gravity of these issues and emphasize the need for effective agricultural policies to be implemented by governments worldwide.”
Mr. Hosein further pointed out that “the government, through the Ministry of Agriculture, Land and Fisheries, is committed to supporting and fostering sustainable agricultural practices; and recognizes that our food heroes are the backbone of our agricultural sector and their contributions are invaluable.”
The Permanent Secretary also thanked the WFDNCTT, for organizing the event and providing the opportunity to recognize and appreciate the efforts of our food heroes; and also emphasized that “through this exhibition, we aim to inspire others to follow in their footsteps and contribute to the development of sustainable agriculture in our country.” He added: “It is a platform to raise awareness of the importance of local food production, encourage innovation, and promote the consumption of healthy and nutritious meals.”
Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Youth Development and National Service, Mr. Narine Charran; FAO Representative, Ms. Crystal Daysee, along with members of the WFDNCTT, toured the booths and supported the exhibitors, as well as the NAMDEVCO farmers who were also at the event.
About the World Food Day National Committee of Trinidad and Tobago (WFDNCTT):
The World Food Day National Committee of Trinidad and Tobago (WFDNCTT) operates under the administrative remit of the Ministry of Agriculture, Land and Fisheries. It aims to promote awareness and action toward eradicating hunger, ensuring food security, and supporting sustainable agriculture practices in Trinidad and Tobago. The committee works closely with various stakeholders to organize events and initiatives that highlight the importance of food production, nutrition, and environmental conservation.