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From Polynesia to the Caribbean

For Release Upon Receipt - March 18, 2015

St. Augustine

UWI Faculty of Food and Agriculture hosts International Breadfruit Conference 

ST. AUGUSTINE, Trinidad and Tobago – It was British and French explorers who brought the breadfruit tree from the South Pacific to the Caribbean during the late 18th Century.  As one of the highest-yielding food plants, with a single tree producing up to 200 or more 4 to 5 pound, nutritious fruits per season, experts consider it ideal for commercialisation. The University of the West Indies (UWI) certainly believes so and is hosting, through its Faculty of Food and Agriculture, the International Breadfruit Conference to be held on the St. Augustine campus from July 5 to 10, 2015.

The 2015 International Breadfruit Conference, "Commercialising breadfruit for food and nutrition security", aims to realise the potential of breadfruit to contribute to food and nutrition security through promoting entrepreneurial efforts and development of industries. The conference organizing committee comprises of members The UWI as well as the Ministry of Food Production, PCS Nitrogen Trinidad Limited, the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA) and the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO).

Conference attendees will be part of an international forum sharing information on entrepreneurial, research and development activities to support increased utilisation of breadfruit and breadnut for food and nutrition security. Entrepreneurs in the food and agriculture sector, including rural communities, will be able to formulate solutions to address the key constraints to commercialising breadfruit and breadnut.

Convenors Drs Laura B. Roberts-Nkrumah and Majeed Mohammed plan to create opportunities for networking among the public and private sectors, rural communities and research institutions for the future development of these crops for food and nutrition security. They also hope to showcase these activities at a Breadfruit Festival, also carded to take place on the campus. Interested persons are also asked to submit papers and presentations for consideration on the thematic areas of the conference. The deadline for these submissions is March 31, 2015.

Full details on the conference are available online at



About The UWI

Since its inception in 1948, The University of the West Indies (UWI) has evolved from a fledgling college in Jamaica with 33 students to a full-fledged, regional University with well over 40,000 students. Today, UWI is the largest, most longstanding higher education provider in the Commonwealth Caribbean, with four campuses in Barbados, Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago, and the Open Campus. The UWI has faculty and students from more than 40 countries and collaborative links with 160 universities globally; it offers undergraduate and postgraduate degree options in Food & Agriculture, Engineering, Humanities & Education, Law, Medical Sciences, Science and Technology and Social Sciences. UWI’s seven priority focal areas are linked closely to the priorities identified by CARICOM and take into account such over-arching areas of concern to the region as environmental issues, health and wellness, gender equity and the critical importance of innovation. Website: 

(Please note that the proper name of the university is The University of the West Indies, inclusive of the “The”, hence The UWI.)