Agriculture has been an integral part of the Jamaican economy, and for many years, local agriculture accounted for most of the food consumed in the country. As climate change disrupts the food supply and production on the island, INMED Aquaponics is leading the charge to assist farmers in implementing aquaponics systems to ensure sustainable livelihoods and food security for local communities.
One such farmer is Vanessa Green from Porus, Manchester. She was previously involved in livestock farming but decided to focus on fish farming—a long-time interest.
She had the basic knowledge of the process as well as some equipment to start on this new venture and reached out to the Rural Agricultural Development Authority (RADA) for technical guidance. RADA connected her to the Senior Regional Technical Officer at INMED Caribbean, who explained the benefits of aquaponics and INMED’s free training programme for farmers.
“I decided to go through the training because after I received the initial information from the INMED team, I wanted to learn more,” said Green. In addition to learning how aquaponics is climate resilient, less labour intensive and yields significantly higher harvests than traditional farming year-round, Green also was impressed with the environmental benefits.
“Because aquaponics doesn’t use dirt, there is no need for certain herbicides, fertilizers and chemicals,” she said. “The fish provides most of the nutrients you need for your system.”