Press Release

Department of Agriculture and Fisheries
Release Date:
Thursday, 7 March 2024 - 2:46pm

The Agriculture and Fisheries Exhibition and Market began with a bang on the sister Island of Virgin Gorda last Saturday, 2nd March, 2024.

The annual event, previously celebrated for a week, has expanded this year with activities being held throughout the month of March under the theme, “Sow the Seeds of Sustainability: Youth Fueling Food Security”.

The Department of Agriculture and Fisheries arranged the agriculture and fisheries exhibition and market event calendar to allow stakeholders to exhibit and promote their businesses and increase the participation of persons across the Virgin Islands.

During the opening ceremony, the Junior Minister for Agriculture and Fisheries, Honourable Dr. Karl Dawson, said that he is committed to continuing the work so that the Virgin Islands will find itself in a place of food security and food sovereignty.

He said, “To achieve our goal of significantly increased production, I believe we must move forward on three key pillars: engagement and cooperation of farmers and fishers; training and development, including developing the next generation of farmers and fishers and; government policies and programmes to support the sector.”

Dr. Dawson further called for collaboration between the farming and fishing community and the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries.

Meanwhile, the Minister for Health and Social Development and representative for the Ninth District, Honourable Vincent Wheatley, spoke about the importance of people engaging in gardening even on a small scale, to promote a healthier lifestyle.

Honourable Wheatley stated, “We cannot divorce agriculture from health. Grow something in your backyard that you enjoy eating.  I want to mention that by spending time in your garden and planting, you are engaging in a very therapeutic exercise which further promotes your health.”

Director for the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries, Mr. Theodore E James, called on the youth to become champions of food security.  He said that today, the people of the Virgin Islands are presented with a unique opportunity to explore, engage, and inspire one another to build a more resilient and prosperous agriculture and fisheries sector.

Mr. James said, “As the next generations of leaders, innovators, and stewards of our planet, the youth are pivotal in driving the transformations necessary to meet the challenges of tomorrow.  Their energy, creativity and vision are essential to fueling initiatives that promote food security, technological innovation and sustainable practices.”

Other activities to highlight Agriculture and Fisheries Exhibition and Market include:

  • 8th March, Anegada Exhibition and Market
  • 13th March, Symposium: Regenerative Farming, A Community Conservation
  • 16th and 17th March, Tortola Exhibition and Market
  • 20th March, Students’ session, Agricultural Education Options
  • 23rd March, Jost Van Dyke Exhibition and Market; Virgin Islands Products Gourmet Dinner-Tortola
  • 30th March Tortola Farm Tours; Virgin Gorda Wahoo Mania Fishing Tournament

The Department of Agriculture and Fisheries is responsible for ensuring food is safe, nutritionally sound, produced and harvested in an environmentally sustainable manner that builds resilience to internal and external shocks while contributing to the economic growth, social well-being and protection of the natural environment.


Berta McKelly Adams

Assistant Information Officer
Department of Information & Public Relations 
Telephone: 468-2740