By Clinton L. Beckford, Donovan R. Campbell (auth.)
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Additional resources for Domestic Food Production and Food Security in the Caribbean: Building Capacity and Strengthening Local Food Production Systems
After many decades of government policies geared toward reducing land tenure insecurity among small farmers, access to good-quality and sufﬁcient farmland remains a persistent problem. Small-scale farming is characterized by multiple tenure arrangements including owning, leasing, renting, and informal user rights relations. Illegal use through squatting is also practiced. Customary tenure is also common in the region. The most common would be family land in Jamaica and common lands in Barbuda. , 2004).
In contemporary Caribbean economies, small-scale farmers are major players in export agriculture with crops like bananas in the Windward Islands and Jamaica; roots and tubers, vegetables, and fruits in Jamaica; and rice in Trinidad and Tobago and Guyana. Many of the crops grown in the region are important staple foods and are also components of a robust internal marketing and distribution network in all the CARICOM countries and are also important in inter-island trade in the eastern Caribbean.
The situation is similar in many other CARICOM states and the developing world, where markets have been opened up through trade liberalization (Short, 2000; Spitz, 2002; Walelign, 2002). We argue that this dependence on food imports constitutes a major threat to Caribbean food security. First of all, purely from a livelihood perspective, it does immeasurable damage to local producers and rural development. Faced with unfair competition and the dumping of cheap, heavily subsidized food mainly from the United States, many farm families experience difﬁculty providing a satisfactory livelihood for themselves (Beckford and Bailey, 2009; CIOEC, 2003; Via Campasina, 1996, 2003; UNDP, 2005).
Domestic Food Production and Food Security in the Caribbean: Building Capacity and Strengthening Local Food Production Systems by Clinton L. Beckford, Donovan R. Campbell (auth.)