280,000 farmers benefit from rice competitiveness program
About 280,000 farmers across the country are benefitting from the estimated 1.4 million bags of certified inbred seeds released to local government units by the Rice Competitiveness Enhancement Fund (RCEF)-Seed Program on its third season of implementation.
“PhilRice in partnership with provincial and municipal LGUs have been working non-stop despite the pandemic restrictions to deliver and distribute the certified inbred seed requirements of farmers listed in the Registry System for Basic Sectors in Agriculture,” said Dr. Flordeliza H. Bordey, RCEF-Seed Program director and deputy executive director of Department of Agriculture-Philippine Rice Research Institute
As of Dec. 13, the program has already reached 931 rice-producing cities and municipalities in 56 provinces. By end of 2021 dry season planting, more than 670,000 farmers are expected to gain from the program.
The program has prioritized distributing seeds of high-yielding varieties, such as NSIC Rc 222, Rc 216, Rc 480, and Rc 160 particularly in typhoon-affected areas in Bicol, Cordillera, and Cagayan regions.
The RCEF-Seed Program allots P3 billion fund every year for the seed requirements of rice farmers and to help farmers produce rice that can compete in the international market.
The LGUs and lawmakers assist in its implementation.
PhilRice leads the RCEF-Seed Program and is the government’s prime agency on rice research and development mandated to help ensure a rice-secure Philippines. – Press release