Dairy Association Chairman says industry is still in post-COVID recovery
Following the launch of the Agriculture Ministry’s five-year dairy strategy, the Ministry says that it is paying particular focus on confronting some of the major challenges the dairy industry still faces three years after the first cases of COVID-19 were reported in Belize. Moving forward in this so-called post-COVID era, the Ministry wants to create a more enabling environment to achieve the desired results of the National Dairy Strategic Plan. However, that will be a long road. According to the Dairy Association chairman, Ernie Thiessen, the industry is still in recovery.
Ernest Thiessen ,Chairman, Dairy Association: “There’s a couple things that have not recovered. The dairy cow in particular is a three year term to recover so no we are not fully recovered from that yet. As far as the production is concerned we can sell all the milk at this point in time which is very good and the consumption is actually higher now than it was during and pre-COVID so people have been used to buy more locally than from outside which is a good thing. So we are recovering but to be fully recovered I’m not sure if I can answer that yet and if it will be helping us to do it it will be depending how the ministries is gonna work together with the import, the contraband and all that stuff how they will respond to it that will help us in the long term.”
When asked to put a price tag on the impact, Thiessen could not provide a dollar figure but indicated that the industry’s losses were significant