July 24th, 2014. From students to CEOs, TTFF works with amazing individuals around the world to alleviate hunger, create jobs and improve the environment. These individuals are our heroes; those admired for noble qualities and regarded as models for others. This certainly describes our partner, Zavier Gray! Through his role as Farm Manager at Orange River Research Station, and his personal dedication to improving our planet, Zavier spends endless hours ensuring TTFF trees receive the best care possible. He goes above and beyond the call of duty on a daily basis, and his dedication is an inspiration to us all.
Zavier grew up in the parish of St. Mary, Jamaica. His father was a farmer and also worked as a driver for the Ministry of Agriculture. Zavier completed his studies at the Jamaican College of Agriculture, Science and Education. Today, he has a beautiful family of his own, including seven year-old daughter Zahra.
Since 2000, Zavier has been Farm Manager at the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries’ renowned Orange River Research Station, a 327-acre crop research station specializing in tree crops. Orange River is the hub of most agriculture research in Jamaica. Here, new varieties of plants, including the Ma’afala breadfruit tree, are tested before distribution to Jamaican farmers. The Jamaican government works in partnership with TTFF to grow young trees to a robust size, increasing the trees’ chances for survival, before distributing them to smallholder farms and community members.
A true hero to TTFF, Zavier wears many hats to help us achieve our mission. He collects TTFF trees at the airport, grows them with care, helps facilitate the distribution process and provides training in the best agricultural methods for successfully growing trees. Host to our February 2014 Breadfruit Summit at Orange River Station, Zavier is the face of what makes our mission successful. Thank you, Zavier!