TABUK CITY, KALINGA. The Farmers Field Schools (FFS) on rice production for Kalinga launched on February 2020 under the Rice Competitiveness Enhancement Fund (RCEF) was finally concluded on July 2020 with 550 farmer graduates amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. The graduates of this dry season FFS are from the municipality of Rizal with 100 graduates from four batches, and Tabuk City with 450 graduates from 18 batches.
By Secretary William D. Dar, Department of Agriculture
1. It is my distinct honor and privilege to virtually join you today as we launch the World Bank’s “Transforming Philippine Agriculture: During COVID-19 and Beyond.”
The Department of Agriculture (DA) said it would push for the digitalization of the country’s agriculture sector under the “new normal” to achieve its goals of reducing poverty and attaining food security.
Agriculture Secretary William D. Dar told the recent 35th United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) Regional Conference for Asia and the Pacific (APRC35) virtual meeting that it is important to teach farm families to capitalize digital agriculture to increase their productivity and incomes.
With four months remaining in the year, the Department of Agriculture (DA) continues to implement major interventions to ensure adequate, accessible, and affordable food to millions of Filipino households, particularly in Metro Manila and other major consumption centers, amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
The government has to date provided more than PHP 100 billion in assistance to rice farmers estimated at PHP 34 billion, and PHP 72 billion worth of savings for consumers due to lower rice retail prices.
Agriculture Secretary William Dar said since August 2019, the Duterte administration has provided rice farmers more than PHP 34 billion worth of assistance to rice farmers aimed at increasing their farm productivity and incomes, broken down as:
To ensure an adequate supply of affordable food and provide farmers, fishers, and their families steady income, the Department of Agriculture (DA) will implement short-gestating farm and fishery projects that will help perk up the country’s economy.
“As we continue to confront the COVID-19 pandemic, we will vigorously implement emergency or short-gestating food production projects in partnership with farmers’ cooperatives and associations (FCAs), the private sector, and local government units (LGUs),” said Agriculture Secretary William Dar.
Extension services continue to evolve. With the challenges that extension workers and farmers face, the Agricultural Training Institute (ATI) continues to explore various strategies to improve its efforts as the extension and training arm of the Department of Agriculture. In over 30 years, the ATI has celebrated various successes and learned from the lessons during hard times. Nonetheless, we are proud to be standing the test of time through the support of our partners and the clientele themselves. This is the ATI Today, more committed to bring you extension services beyond boundaries.