Young Farmers Get Certified on Organic Agriculture Production

The participants perform seed-sowing of vegetable on a seedling trays as part of the farm immersion.

MAJAYJAY, Laguna – Twenty young farmers of the 2016 batch of the Young Filipino Farmers’ Training Program in Japan (YFFTPJ) passed with flying colors the latest Enhancement and Assessment on Organic Agriculture (OA) Production National Certificate II (NC II).

The training, conducted by the Agricultural Training Institute (ATI) in cooperation with the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA), was held as part of the Institute’s efforts to continually capacitate these young farmers even after their 11-month training in Japan.

The training, in particular, was held to further boost the knowledge, skills, and attitude of the participants in organic agriculture production in accordance with the industry standards. It covered core competencies in the production of organic livestock, vegetables, fertilizers, and concoctions.

Activities involved were classroom discussions, farm immersion, and hands-on workshops. Participants were also able to witness and perform the preparation of organic concoctions, feeds, and silage for raising organic chicken and hogs. They also undertook land preparation activities as well as seed sowing, transplanting, and preparation of vermiculture bin and hog beddings.

In the last part of the training, the participants were assessed through face-to-face interview and hands-on activities. This was led by Reden Mark Costales, President and CEO of Costales Nature Farms; Brian Amante Belen of Ato Belen’s Farm; and Amy Gonzales-Eguia of the ATI-International Training Center on Pig Husbandry (ITCPH).

In the end, the three TESDA personnel, who oversaw the assessment, gave a 100% rate to all the participants. With their certification, the ATI hopes that the young farmers will be able to capacitate other farmers in their respective communities on organic agriculture while applying the techniques and concepts they learned to improve their farms.

"I am thankful that we were given this opportunity. This NC II will help us a lot to excel in our field," Janbert Aranza from Negros Oriental, who serves as the 2016 batch president, said.

Aside from the YFFTPJ alumni, two farmers, who are also Gawad Saka awardees, and seven ATI staff were part of the activity. This was held at the Costales Agricultural Skills Development Institute, Incorporated, Costales Nature Farms in this town last November 6-10, 2017.