Agricultural Policy in the Caribbean: A Regional Response
The subsectoral agreements in rice and oils and fats provided the background and experience for the adoption of the Agricultural Marketing Protocol as part of the Caribbean Free Trade Association (CARIFTA) Agreement—a first attempt to include agriculture within the larger context of regional integration. The CARIFTA Agreement came into force on May 1, 1968, as did the Agriculture Marketing Protocol, which provided for protected regional trade with respect to twenty-two selected regionally produced agricultural commodities. Foreign capital flowing into the industrial and tourist sectors has led to the spilling over of inflated wages into the agricultural sector. The various elements of Caribbean agricultural policy can be grouped broadly into three categories: measures to provide credit for agricultural production, measures to provide for better use of agricultural inputs, and measures to program regional food production to respond to regional needs. In 1982 the Caribbean Food Corporation established a trading subsidiary, the Caribbean Agricultural Trading Corporation.