Haiti Yam Production in Grand Anse and Valley of Jacmel

From September 4 to September 6, 2014, the Ministry of Agriculture organized and hosted a workshop along with Natural Resources and Rural Development, through the Office of the Secretary of State for Agricultural Recovery, Joseph Vernet, to facilitate talks that could bring forth a program that would give support to the yam value chain. The workshop, held in Torbeck, was financed by the Swiss Cooperation in Haiti.


There have been some areas of improvement in Haiti where yam farming is concerned. The sector has been endowed by the Swiss Development Cooperation from 2015 to 2020. Also, since the past 5 years, the product grew significantly from 344,500 metric tonnes in 2010 to 500,000 metric tonnes last year. This 45% increase was seen in the National Yam Productions areas that cover approximately 30,000 hectares in Grande Anse, spots in Pilate, Piacenza and the Valley of Jacmel.

Still, while this increase in production is good, it is not enough when one considers how profitable yam production could be, or the level of initial investment made by yam producers. Yam farming's biggest problem may be a lack of coordination between the different segments of the sector. It also suffers from improper marketing, a lack of research in agriculture and credit, as well as processing and storage problems and poor product consumption on the national level. There is also the issue to producers that they can't find good seeds, and have no technical packages to manage fertility and control crop diseases and pests. They also suffer from little or no market access.

Part of a larger Ministry of Agriculture project, the workshop will, hopefully, lead to a yam industry policy, which should start being promoted by the end of October.

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