The Guyana Livestock Development Authority’s (GLDA) extension office in Region 9 has increased its capabilities to offer improved services to livestock farmers in the Rupununi through the acquisition of a $3 million hematology machine.

This was disclosed by Agriculture Minister Zulfikar Mustapha, who recently traveled to North Rupununi and officially handed over the machine to GLDA’s regional agriculture department.

Minister Mustapha explained that with government increasing efforts to improve and increase its livestock industry, the acquisition of the machine is both timely and important especially in the Rupununi, which is one of Guyana’s largest livestock rearing and producing regions.

“As Minister of Agriculture, I’d like to see our livestock industry expand. This is why we are putting the necessary systems in place to ensure services like these are available across the country. This machine will boost GLDA’s capacity to provide quality services to persons who rear livestock for beef and other bi-products, as well as, for breeding purposes. This is just one of the many steps taken to improve the industry in the region. Additionally, the livestock authority will also be procuring a number of other equipment that will see a further boost to the industry in the region,” Minister Mustapha said.

The machine was purchased as part of the region’s Agriculture Department budget in collaboration with the livestock authority to fulfill its mandate of carrying out simple blood samples in the region. Hematology machines are generally used to identify the number of red and white blood cells, blood platelets, and hemoglobin levels from a sample of blood taken from livestock.

These tests identify cases of anemia, inflammation, blood clotting disorders, etc. They also determine how the animal’s body is responding to treatment for any of those diseases.

Minister Mustapha also said that additional equipment required to improve GLDA’s sample processing lab will be purchased soon as part of the region’s 2021 agriculture budgetary allocation.

Minister Mustapha also commissioned a $2.1 million shadehouse in Nappi Village as part of the Ministry’s smart agriculture initiative.

During the simple commissioning exercise, Minister Mustapha said government was committed to ensuring that farmers in the hinterland regions enjoy the same amount of resources as those residing on the Coast and other parts of the country.

He also said that the shadehouse shows the potential of the community and that his Ministry will continue to offer the support needed to further develop food and nutrition security in the region.

“Our officers will work along with the village officials responsible for supervising the shadehouse to ensure it has the kind of crops needed throughout the community and that the space in the shadehouse is fully utilized. Promoting shadehouses is promoting climate-smart agriculture. Globally, climate change continues to have an impact on agriculture. The weather patterns have become very unpredictable,” Minister Mustapha said.


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