DILIMAN, Quezon City – Key legislative officials and family farming-related organizations in the country commended the Department of Agriculture (DA) and the Agricultural Training Institute (ATI) for leading the development of a ten-year national roadmap for family farming.
Senator Kiko Pangilinan, Minority Leader on the Committee on Agriculture and one of the panel members during the initial presentation of the draft Philippine National Action Plan (NAP) for the United Nations Decade of Family Farming (UNDFF) for 2019-2028, said that the document is comprehensive, and the plans are clearly stated.
Peter Turingan from the Senate Economic and Planning Office affirmed this and congratulated the Department and the ATI for taking the lead role in the series of multi-stakeholder dialogue for the crafting of the NAP.
Similarly, Tamara Duran of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), and Alessandro Marini of the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), said that the draft NAP is “well-crafted.” Marini furthered that the approaches in the formulation of the document were “inclusive and participatory.”
The draft NAP covers a brief background of family farming, set of objectives, multisectoral participatory crafting strategies, conceptual and logical frameworks, as well as some ways forward.
While the panel members complimented the document for its comprehensiveness and inclusiveness, some additional insights and recommendations were, likewise, given.
Particularly, Pangilinan and Romulo Miral, Jr., from the Congressional Policy & Budget Research Department, highlighted the need to supplement the DA’s overarching goal of increased income among the farmers and fishers, as part of the NAP, with specific data.
“Determine what are the incomes today and have that as benchmark,” Pangilinan advised.
Miral reinforced this as he underscored the importance of monitoring and evaluation in program implementation and formulating roadmaps.
“We need data to support our targets, as well as evaluation to see whether we are implementing the right policies or whether these are correctly, effectively, or efficiently carried out,” he said.
On the other hand, Marini emphasized that the NAP should also include the localization of the family farming approach in various provinces and municipalities in the country.
Other comments and suggestions for the improvement of the NAP include identification of possible funding resources, linking of the plan to broader national food policies and global action plans, composition of national steering committee, and harnessing support from other sectors.
Among other panel members and spectators present during the presentation of the draft NAP for UNDFF were representatives from the Offices of Senator Cynthia Villar and Senator Grace Poe, PAKISAMA National Coordinator Raul Socrates Banzuela, DA Undersecretary for Policy and Planning Rodolfo Vicerra, DA Chief of Staff Leocadio Sebastian, and some key multisectoral program partners.
The development of the NAP was made in response to the United Nation’s call for a unified action framework for family farming, declaring 2019-2028 as the UNDFF. According to the FAO, family farmers have critical roles in accelerating national progress given its predominant contribution in the sector.
Relative to this, the Department, as UNDFF National Action Point, created the National Committee for Family Farming (NCFF) with the ATI as NCFF Chairperson through Special Order 792 in 2019.
The draft document is a product of a series of planning and consultative activities with key DA agencies, national government agencies, state universities, civil groups, and selected farmer organizations. These were spearheaded by the ATI in collaboration with IFAD, FAO, and Grow Asia-Philippines Partnership for Sustainable Agriculture.
ATI Assistant Director Rosana Mula presented the first draft of the Philippine NAP for family farming to key decision-makers and family farming-related agencies last February 11, 2021 via Zoom.