June 14, 2024

DOLORES, Abra – With the goal of building  a culture of organic agriculture, the Agricultural Training Institute (ATI) Cordillera Regional Training Center conducted a training for trainers on the Participatory Governance System (PGS).

The PGS is meant to capacitate organic farming practitioners in Abra in preparing for their PGS Manual of Operations, which they need when they apply to be certified as organic farming practitioners by the Bureau of Agriculture and Fisheries Standards (BAFS).

ATI organic agriculture focal person Edwin Dicksen, who served as the speaker-trainer, said the training was attended by two farmers’ groups with more than 50 active members.

 “It was participated in by the Abra Organic Practitioners Agriculture Cooperative (Abopac) and Adtempco and were oriented on the Organic Agriculture Act and organic agriculture standards and given an overview on PGS,” Dicksen said.

He said the highlight of the PGS training was the establishment and operation of PGS of the farmers’ groups, and eventually their accreditation by the organic certifying bodies. Part of the training was a workshop, which led the farmers to craft their internal standards and manual of operations. 

“We continue to provide all the technical assistance to these groups, even after this training, we will review their manual of operations to fast track the process of their accreditation,” he said.

Once accredited as a PGS group by the BAFS, they can certify their fellow farmers who are organic farming practitioners as well.

This will establish assurance for consumers regarding the integrity of the organic agriculture products in the province.

Ceferina Arquitola, a participant, said the training helped a lot as it will eventually enable them to become organic certifying bodies soon.

Sikaminton ti mabalin nga mang certify kadagiti organic farms ditoy Abra, isu nga adu ti naytulong na daytoy kadakami nga organic farming practitioners ta haanton nga magastuan dagiti kakadwami nga agpa-certify ti sabali,” she stated.

Adtempco and Abopac are the first groups in the province to undergo the certification process. – Christian Allister Tubadeza