Extensionist producers in agriculture find a strong place in Contramaestre to produce grains, basically corn and beans.
The systematic meeting of those who are part of this movement with specialists and scientists from the Institute of Grain Research in Cuba is part of the strategies applied by the country to strengthen agricultural extensionism.
Contramaestre hosted the 6th Meeting of Extensionist Producers of the province of Santiago de Cuba, which advances in the integration, demonstrative plots, training and presence of women in order to achieve food sovereignty.
In the event, we talked with Yosvanis Nuñez Valera, director of the Grain Research Territorial Station, a science management center to serve the five eastern provinces.
Journalist: Is grain production in eastern Cuba supported by any collaborative project?
Yosvanis Núñez: “Yes, not only in the east of the island but in other provinces of the country it is supported by the collaboration project that our institute has signed with the international collaboration agency YAIKA of Japan: SEGRANOS.
“This is entitled Improvement of the Agrarian Extension System for the production of basic grains in Cuba. This work has allowed us to disseminate new technologies to the producers who have access to them in a much more viable way.
“Without a doubt, this allows them to enrich their knowledge in the management of these crops”.
Q: What is your assessment of grain production in Contramaestre?
Y.N.: “This municipality in Santiago de Cuba province is one of the productive poles that has an impact on the production of mostly maize, but beans are also planted. There are already 46 extension producers, 40 of them from Contramaestre.
“The work is aimed at identifying, preparing and setting up demonstration areas together with variety gardens that will allow the rest of the producers to benefit from each experience in order to enrich the work of the cooperatives.
Q: Where does the introduction of new varieties of grains go in this part of the Cuban east?
Y.N.: “We are intentionally working in the territories to replace the traditional varieties. In Contramaestre, five new varieties of corn have already been introduced, such as Dorado, MAIG 5461, Diamante, MAIG 5462 and Escambray.
“These are included in the register of varieties and show a good behavior in our ecosystem according to the soil and climate conditions of the territory. Yields per hectare are very favorable.
“In this municipality of Santiago, new varieties of beans have already been introduced and we have inserted other grains such as soybeans and rice”.
For the researchers of the National Institute in the eastern region of Cuba, the goal is to grow quantitatively with the extensionist producers, to strengthen this system and make it much more accessible for all the producers.
This is an aim that should underpin the Agricultural Extension System to increase food production in each location.