St Lucia Host Greenhouse Tomato Production Workshop

CASTRIES, St Lucia — The Taiwan Technical Mission in Saint Lucia, in cooperation with the ministry of agriculture, recently hosted a greenhouse tomato production workshop. More than 54 local farmers and extension officers attended the event.

At the event, Tim Shiao, Taiwan expert, taught local farmers the expertise in greenhouse farming, including skillful pruning, disease and pest control. He explained that greenhouse management needs more techniques than outdoor crops, especially as the higher humidity, temperature and lush green foliage create conditions that enable certain diseases and insects to thrive. Farmers have to focus more on house ventilation management and pest control.

Mario Cheng, head of Taiwan Technical Mission in Saint Lucia, encouraged local farmers to start a greenhouse tomato business and emphasized that tomatoes are easy to grow and more profitable than other greenhouse crops. He also noted that greenhouse planting can extend the production period and increase farmer’s net income.

The greenhouse tomato production workshop is part of the ongoing fruit and vegetable demonstration and extension project jointly undertaken by Taiwan and Saint Lucia. To date, the project had implemented 600 field technical advisory services, provided 20,000 seedlings, and trained over 2,000 farmers, steadily fulfilling its goal of improving local farmers’ competitiveness and revenue. The project is expected to be completed by the end of 2018.