ATI Compound, El Salvador City, Misamis Oriental---In celebration of the National Rice Awareness Month (NRAM), the management and staff of the center celebrated via ‘PALAYhigalaay sa ATI’ the essence of rice and the importance of rice farmers in terms of feeding the country and contributing to the Philippine economy.
The said month-long celebration aims to strengthen the bond between rice farmers and the consumers towards quality life. It also focuses on improving farmers’ competitiveness to produce quality rice, while reaching out to all rice eaters to be aware on responsible rice consumption.
"We have to value every grain of palay. We have to value every grain of what we consume because aside from our 'panunumpa' not to waste rice or engage in any form of excess, putting value in every grain also means valuing the efforts of our farmers", Center Director Maria Lydia A. Echavez said in her message. The message was also in remembrance of the passion of organic rice farmer champion, Mr. Nicasio "Nick" F. Engallado.
Assistant Center Director Noemi Beth G. Macario formally declared the opening and start of the PALAYhigalaay sa ATI.
Later, the management and staff of the center engaged in activities such as Quiz Bigas, Chef Wars: Rice Edition, Modified Boodle Fight sa ATI, Amazing Rice, Dakip Biik Challenge, Raffle Draw, rice-related Webinar series, vlogging contest, and RCEF Information Caravan with a unifying theme in mind "Grow Local. Buy Local. Eat Local".
True to our commitment to 'rice' as one in patronizing locally-produced rice, the center mounted a culinary face-off via Chef Wars. Five competing teams vie for cooking supremacy with rice as its main ingredient. Delectable and delicious rice-based treats took centerstage in the judges' palates such as LongShiLog, Arroz Caldo, KimRice Toppings, Spicy Blue Pater and Palitaw, Bilo-bilo, and Rice Milk Tea.
Rice Program point person Ms. Jhoylie Mae R. Caumban delivered the overview of the NRAM and extended her appreciation and sincere thanks to the management for the support and success of the said event.
The month long celebration is observed by virtue of Proclamation No. 524 signed on January 5, 2004, by then Pres. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo. The celebration of NRAM also enables farmers use of efficient farming technologies, have access to rice information and engage in agripreneurship.
Accordingly, the Department of Agriculture (DA) encourages farmers to produce quality rice and instill the values of responsible rice consumption among consumers, thus contribute in achieving rice sufficiency in the country.