June 23, 2024

The Department of Agriculture continues to invest on programs and projects to assist the Cordillera farmers and ensuring food sufficiency for the region and for the country amid the Covid-19 pandemic and other challenges.

The DA-Cordillera reported as of June 3, the agency has already obligated around P1.01 billion for various agricultural programs and projects implemented in the region.

In enhancing productivity and food sufficiency, DA-Cordillera invested around P473.86 million on rice, corn, high value crops, livestock, organic agriculture and other regular programs that benefitted 33,669 farmers and 497 farmer groups.  

It also poured in P44.19M worth of interventions on the rising prices of fertilizers.

In addressing food inflation, around P67.71M was also invested on interventions that include market development, production and credit support, infrastructure development and promotion of raising alternative meat sources such as rabbit and poultry.

On the control of pests and diseases which include African Swine Fever, Avian Influenza (AI), and Fall Army Work, DA-Cordillera spent around P247.53M for swine repopulation initiatives and P1.75M for AI interventions.

The other interventions DA-Cordillera is implementing include the provision of fuel subsidies to corn farmers; improving logistics and food mobilization that include the conduct of “Kadiwa ni Ani at Kita”; fuel subsidies to corn farmers; and infrastructure support in terms of irrigation network, machinery/equipment/facilities, and farm-to-market roads.  

The DA-Cordillera is also implementing the Plant, Plant Plant Program Part 2 with a budget of P32.02M.  The Rice Competitiveness Enhancement Fund-Rice Farmers Financial Assistance with 329.18M budget allocated in 2021 is ongoing together with the province-led Agriculture and Fisheries Extension Systems.

DA-Cordillera Regional Executive Director Cameron Odsey assured the intensified efforts of the department in pushing for food sufficiency and strengthening agri-business as well as in improving Cordillera agriculture sector’s contribution to national food security especially in terms of semi-temperate vegetables and fruits amidst the challenges such as the pandemic, the ASF, and other pest and disease as well as the effect of the Russian-Ukraine war on agriculture.

 Odsey lauded the effort of farmers who continuously plant and produce the food that the Filipino needs.

“I believe that the recovery of our economy will be depending on agriculture; on how much we produce in terms of agricultural products. DA through our plans and programs will continue to provide support to our farmers,” he added.

 With the incoming Marcos administration, Odsey said DA has set the framework in moving agriculture forward through the National Agriculture and Fisheries Modernization and Industrialization Plan 2021-2030. – Carlito Dar