Small-scale growers ‘have a role’ as farming goes pro

Farming on St Helena needs to get bigger, better and more business-like, says the island’s draft agricultural policy. But the document also recognises the role of small-scale producers – and their place in island life.  “Agricultural enterprise on a commercial basis is practically absent,” says the Growing Forward document. “The efficient management of resources, mechanisation, professional […]

Old ways pose risk to island food plan

Stuck-in-the-mud growers have been cited as the main threat to plans for St Helena to produce more of its own food. “Inertia” and delay in changing ways of working are identified as a high risk to the island’s draft Growing Forward strategy – with a high potential impact. The paper says strong leadership is needed […]

Cut-price foods that left island with a bulging health problem

St Helena no longer has the highest incidence of type-2 diabetes in the world, but that’s only because it’s got even worse elsewhere. Cheap imports of sweet milk and rice may have kept Saints from starvation in harder times, but now the island’s health service is struggling with the consequences, says MIKE THORPE. A target for treating diabetics has been […]

Catering expert Gillian cites need for cold food storage

St Helena’s lack of a cold store for keeping food fresh has been identified as a problem for the island’s growing catering industry. Hospitality adviser Gillian Scott Moore, who is setting up a temporary training restaurant in Jamestown, refers to the problem on her internet journal. Her blog describes the race to buy imported fresh fruit as […]

Paperwork problem leaves St Helena crying out for onions

St Helena is suffering an onion shortage. St Helena Online understands that problems with paperwork in Cape Town meant only a small part of the intended order arrived on the last voyage of the RMS St Helena. “The few that arrived were snapped up immediately,” according to Nick Thorpe, the island’s main independent retailer. “Panic […]

Civil service versus the can-do culture: a governor’s view

In the third extract of an address to the Friends of St Helena, former governor Andrew Gurr reflects on the island’s emerging private sector, optimism and – just briefly – education. Read part one of his recollections here, and find part two here. On the private sector You have the private-versus-public tension, which is always […]

Roddy brings an end to egg imports (with 525 little helpers)

When he lived in the UK, Roddy Yon would feed his few hens and dream of returning home to start his own poultry farm. After 25 years away, he walked into the offices of the St Helena Development Agency with a business plan, and came out with a grant to help him buy 250 chickens. Now, […]