Climate-Smart Farm Business School: The New Normal

Participants collaborate on a workshop on Community-Managed Disaster Risk Reduction.

TAGAYTAY, Cavite – The Agricultural Training Institute (ATI) is set to take the school to more farmers to help them become not only market-oriented, but also climate-smart. Recognizing the need to become more proactive extension workers to cope up with the new normal in agriculture and fisheries as an effect of climate change, the ATI conducted the National Training of Trainers on Climate-Smart Farm Business School in this city.

“The new normal in climate change is equated with extreme climate events which means that ‘business as usual’ is not acceptable in this new climate surprises and will not eventually succeed.” This was what ATI’s Focal Person on Climate Change Vicente Dayanghirang, Jr. remarked as he discussed “Climate-Smart Agriculture in the Context of the ASEAN Integration.” He added that the new normal in extension and advisory services are proactive actions for preparing any climate related negative (risks) and positive (opportunities) changes.

The said training was primarily held towards the creation of new ways of upgrading farmers’ awareness, understanding and learning. This is to help them adapt to the changing climate and reorient their families’ ecological and farm resources into economic units that will enable them to acquire knowledge on business farming.

Guided by five modules related to both climate change and Farm Business School (FBS), the participants were able to assess vulnerability threats and agro-environmental risks to small-scale farmer business; identify opportunities for resilience-building in business planning and development; integrate climate-smart practices in the FBS approach; and develop an action plan for piloting climate-smart FBS in their respective areas.

These five modules include: the Framework for New Normal and the Integration of Climate Change Risk Reduction with the Opportunities in the Implementation of ASEAN Economic Community; Community-Managed Disaster Risk Reduction and Management; Climate-Smart Agriculture; Good Agricultural Practices Certification; and Farming as a Business.

The participants looked forward to being able to help their fellow farmers and other stakeholders acquire more knowledge and skills that will make their farms more profitable in the face of climate- and economic-related challenges.

A total of 31 ATI climate change focal persons from its Central Office and network of training centers took part of the activity which was held at Hotel Dominique on July 12 to 19, 2016.