Cuba, October 23.- Expanding food production and contributing to the diversification of the economy were the objectives considered by small farmers from around the country who gathered October 21-22, for a meeting of the Association of Small Farmers (ANAP) Central Committee, in the Niceto Pérez García Center, in Güira de Melena, Mayabeque.
During the event, José Ramón Machado Ventura, second secretary of the Party Central Committee and a vice president of the Councils of State and Ministers, emphasized the importance of achieving greater productivity, using resources provided by the state rationally, as well as the need for provinces to meet their own population's needs as much as possible.
Debates, analyses, and reports on progress in implementing agreements reached at the group's 11th Congress allowed for the organization's work to be evaluated and strategies charted to increase production of vegetables, grains, meat, and milk.
Gustavo Rodríguez Rollero, minister of Agriculture (Minag), stressed the importance of planning all investments, supporting programs to develop cooperatives and ensuring that all agricultural lands are under cultivation.
Reports indicated that, although ANAP's work has produced stable results, shortcomings exist in providing the variety and quality of foods needed by the population. Some 1,318 programs are underway to assist cooperatives in developing production.
In the wake of damage to agriculture caused by Hurricane Irma, the ANAP and the Ministry have prioritized the recovery of areas affected, and work is progressing in cane fields, as well as coffee, cacao, and tobacco plantations, critical to meeting export projections.
ANAP President Rafael Santisteban Pozo highlighted progress made in involving young farmers and women, as well as advances in financial administration, timely contracting, and legal advisement for cooperatives.
The Central Committee approved plans to meet production goals and unanimously voted to call for an immediate end of the U.S. blockade of Cuba, which continues to hamper the development of Cuban agriculture, reaffirming the commitment of men and women in the country's fields to our social project. (Granma)