Talakayan sa Philippine Information Agency (PIA) showcased the development programs, projects and activities for the agriculture and fisheries sector in region 10 during its May episode at Limketkai Luxe Hotel in Cagayan de Oro City.
Audy Maagad, Department of Agriculture (DA) region 10 supervising agriculturist, presented the new programs and technology given to the rice farmer beneficiaries. Some programs includes: (1) seed stocking and storage warehouse facility; (2) agricultural machinery and equipment for calamity and epidemic quick response pool such as back hoe and pump and engine with complete accessories; (3) agricultural chemicals for epidemic mitigation and control; (4) enhancing competitiveness through expanded hybrids/cs seed utilization in low yielding areas; (5) provision of small scale irrigation projects in rice areas; and (6) agriculture and fishery equipment and facilities farm production-related machinery and equipment such as the mini/4WD tractor, hand tractor with implements, power tiller, transplanter and combine harvester and hauler.
On the other hand, Reynaldo Amatong and Jose Pepe Romo from the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) region 10, presented the locally funded projects and the foreign assisted projects of the office.
Among the locally funded projects are: (1) DAR-CRS (DAR-Catholic Relief Service) which utilizes the eight steps in agro-enterprise clustering approach popularized by Catholic Relief Services (CRS) to increase the production and income of Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries (ARBs) and their household through Agricultural Extension, Marketing Assistance, and Capacity-building to the municipalities of Bukidnon, Misamis Oriental and Misamis Occidental which produce soy beans, milled rice, ginger powder, coffee powder and tilapia crunch; (2) VLPCEP (Village Level Processing Center Enhancement Program) which aims to provide technical and financial support to existing ARB products and enterprise in Agrarian Reform Communities (ARCs) to enhance its existing processing facilities, secure FDA (BFAD) permits/licenses and to penetrate the local and national markets in some municipalities of Bukidnon, Misamis Occidental, Lanao del Norte and Misamis Oriental which produce corn coffee, tablea and turmeric.
Foreign assisted projects (FAPs), on the other hand, includes Project ConVERGE which aims to enable agrarian reform beneficiaries, smallholder farmers and rural workers to become highly productive and competitive entrepreneurs and contribute to the achievement of broad-based rural economic growth. Their products include cassava production and processing enterprise, muscovado production and processing and trading in Bukidnon; coco sap sweetener in Misamis Oriental; and abaca production, processing and marketing in Camiguin.
Moreover, to help the fisherfolks and their families in the sea area of Northern Mindanao in their livelihood, Provincial Fisheries Officer Maxim Xerxes Cabio of the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) region 10 said that the office has been distributing fiberglass boats with engine for faster and eco-friendly fishing as one boat lessen one tree to be cut in making a wooden boat.
In the end, Maagad encouraged the students to be more interested in agriculture than electronics and technology as the Philippines has a lot of land to be developed. He encouraged them to make more scientific studies regarding farming so we could help our farmers, our lands and help our country make use of the abundant natural resources that we have. (Cherryl Juranes/PIA10)