Situated in the northeastern part of Zamboanga del Sur, surrounded by vast land and water resources, the Municipality of Molave continues to provide significant contributions in the overall agricultural productivity in Zamboanga Peninsula.
Molave is a first class municipality producing various crops, including corn which is the second most important crop in the country. Its local government unit (LGU) was able to execute strategies to double its productivity for quality corn and further expand good agricultural practices (GAP) in the municipality.
The average yield of corn in the municipality has shown consistent increase from 2015 to 2017, consequently generating more income for farmers and their families. For yellow corn, the average yield in this period has reached 5.57 metric tons per hectare and 2.57 metric tons per hectare for white corn. The harvested crops were proven to be safe and with high quality, as shown in various laboratory tests conducted by the Department of Agriculture (DA) and the National Food Authority.
To intensify the assistance for corn farmers, as well as the monitoring measures in corn production, the municipality has developed four corn cluster areas namely: Molave Corn Cluster, Gonosan Corn Cluster, Dalaon Corn Cluster Farmers Association, and Bag-ong Ariosa Corn Cluster Farmers Association.
Activities for each cluster were identified including soil sampling analysis, coordination for post-harvest facilities, seed exchange programs, business operations, and the move towards GAP in corn. The LGU has, likewise, assigned a team of agricultural extension workers (AEW) for each cluster.
Moreover, the Municipality of Molave crafted a four-year roadmap (2017-2021) geared towards creating more opportunities in the corn industry, ultimately establishing a sustainable food value chain system.
They have envisioned a progressive community of farmers adopting GAP and sustainable organic farming for corn and other crops to ensure food security, safety, and protection of the environment. Grounded on the principles of extension and public service, the Molave LGU is committed to transform corn farming communities through seed subsidy, capacity enhancement activities, network opportunities, mechanization, and organic agriculture.
With these efforts, Molave was recognized in 2018 and 2019 during the National Quality Corn Achievers Awards. This awards program by DA, in close collaboration with the Agricultural Training Institute, gives credit to the outstanding contributions of individuals, provinces, coordinators, and AEWs for their untiring efforts and strong commitment in placing corn and cassava at the forefront of agricultural development.
Promoting corn as staple food next to rice fills the gap in our aim towards rice sufficiency. In Zamboanga Peninsula, Molave has proven its capacities in terms of production and promotion of this crop. With their initiatives in producing high-quality and safe corn yield, anchored in well-defined development visions, the municipality is on its way to advance corn farming in the country.