Minister of Agriculture Zulfikar Mustapha says he is optimistic that the open field trial for wheat production will be successful. This trial is expected to commence by the end of September at the Santa Fe Farm in Region Nine.
The first trial to determine if wheat can be produced here has been completed and was a success at the Burma Rice Station in Mahaicony.
Guyana received 49 varieties of wheat from the Government of Mexico to start the trial phase back in May. Researchers will now move to see if wheat can withstand Guyana’s climate in an open field.
On the sidelines of an event on Thursday, Minister Mustapha said the trial will commence once the persistent rainfall stops.
The Ministry of Agriculture will be working with the Brazilian Agricultural Research Corporation (Embrapa) to offset the wheat trail on some 5000 acres of land on the Santa Fe Farm.
“He [Director of Embrapa] has visited Region 9 and when he look at the areas he said it’s very conducive for the trial. I’m hoping at the end of September, hopefully we can have the less rainfall, we’ll commence the open field trial.”
According to the Agriculture Minister, six varieties of wheat will be tested to see which one is suitable to grow in the tropical area.
“But he [is] very optimistic that wheat can grow in Guyana in the open field and at the end of that, hopefully, as long as it grow properly then we’ll go in large scale.”
This initiative ties in with the Government and the Caribbean region’s plan to reduce the import bill by 25% by 2025.