Erning’s Earnings: E & N farm Success Story

 Rice, coconut seedlings and trees, rubber, coffee, lanzones, durian, rambutan, vegetable, ornamentals,  cattle, native chicken, pigs, ducks, guinea fowls, fish,  name it and E & N farm have it.
E & N farm is a five-hectare diversified farm  owned by  Ernesto “ Erning” Leonar located in Linabo, a small rural barangay in  the City of Malaybalay, Bukidnon.  E and N farm is definitely to be ENVIED. It is an accredited ATI Learning site.
Erning who is from a family of farmers from  Marangag, Kiblawan, Davao del Sur was not able to go to college. His lack of education, however did not deter him from dreaming for a comfortable life for his family.
 With his acquired knowledge in farming, he and his wife Nadora started a modest venture when they married in 1974. He planted cassava, rice and corn in Manolo Fortich, Bukidnon.  Fueled by his dream of a better life, he never cease to look for greener pastures.  The brush of success started painting his farming career in 1999, when he was able to buy a five-hectare farm in Lalawan, Linabo, Malaybalay City, now known  as  the E & N farm. 
E & N farm bloomed and is presently one of the most visited Diversified farms in Bukidnon. His farm  does not only serve as a  production  area, but  as a learning site where students, teachers, farmers and farming enthusiasts learned  technologies  while enjoying  and unwinding with nature.
He humbly started with a backyard piggery which was then his highest income earner. In fact, Erning and his wife were able to raise and send all their children to school through farming alone.
Like other farmers, paving the way to this victorious lift is no bed of roses for Erning. However, he has proven that with an open mind, a thirst for new knowledge and more income opportunities, he can have the better life he has dreamed.
It was in 2012 when Erning came across  ATI-Region 10. It was this time when he learned new technologies and opportunities to develop in his  farm.   ATI helped him unleash the hidden potentials of his farm through trainings and exposures trips to successful farms.  Because of his receptiveness and willingness to apply the learnings he gained from trainings and tours, his farm flourished. Visitors and On –The-Job trainees from all over Mindanao visited E&N Farms.
At present, his biggest earners are his coconut seedlings. Visitors usually buy his seedlings after tasting the sweet “buko” juice and “buko” meat. His other regular earners are his rice, piggery, native chicken, fishpond and fruit trees. His organically grown vegetables are mostly for their own consumption. The other commodities such as coffee and rubber are starting to bring in income.  He sells his fresh produce to walk-in buyers, and gets orders from local business establishments   and local government offices in Malaybalay.
Along with these, he has been a consistent farmer-partner of ATI in conducting Farmers Field School in PalayCheck System and has started accepting On-the-Job trainees through ATI’s Adopt a 4her program and Youth Empowerment Scholarship program. 
His notable accomplishments were validated when he became a three-time Gawad Saka Awardee  from the year 2011 to 2013 and a recipient  of various farm assistance from agencies  such as the  Department of Agriculture – Regional  Field Office 10 , Bureau of Fisheries and Natural Resources –Region 10, City Agriculture Office  of Malaybalay City  and Provincial Agriculture Office of Bukidnon, and  the ATI.
 Erning may not have the degree of a professional teacher but he has touched many lives of youth farmers who were given the opportunity to work with him and be his students .
With his humble flight yet seemingly overflowing blessings, he incessantly inspires other farmers to  aim for a better life.  
Behind all his success, he looks back with delight and gratitude to the agencies that enabled him to reap  the good harvest  he  has today.
For Erning, he has achieved  more than the good life he planned to earn for his family  40 years ago.