DA trains rice farmers, irrigators in Zamboanga Peninsula

The Department of Agriculture (DA) has completed the training of its third batch of 32 farmers and irrigators for its Training of Trainers (TOT) for Farmers/ Irrigators Association in Pagadian City,

The week-long training was conducted the other week by TOT adviser and facilitator, Gianipa A. Manupac. DA Regional Executive Director, Eduardo B. Holoyohoy said the training encouraged the farmers to work hand in hand in rice production in achieving its goal of rice self-sufficiency.

He said “the Department of Agriculture (DA) is committed to keep pace with the needs and progress of the Filipino people and its agriculture by supporting new markets and movements that will keep farmers profitable and help create an income generating rice granary throughout the year.”

The TOT Program for Palay Check is part of the efforts of the DA to secure for sufficiency in the country. He said “it aims to enhance the knowledge of the rice farmers and irrigators to minimize the cost of farm inputs by maximizing the use of available resources and to minimize the big gap of the harvests in terms of yield from one cropping to another.

In celebration of 2013 as the National Year of Rice (NYR 2013), its advocacy on responsible rice consumption requires the public, producers, and policy makers to work hand in hand in achieving its goal for rice self-sufficiency.

“We are eating more rice than other food groups when rice and other grains should only be one-fourth of our plate meal. We restrict our energy source too much to rice," said Regional Rice Action Officer, Winifreda P. Jose.

“For each grain saved, a life is saved. This line elevates the status of the farmers not only as rice producers but also as life savers, giving life to the nation. Ang mga mag-uuma mao ang dugo nga naglatay sa nasud, (The farmers are the bloodstream of the nation)," Provincial Coordinator, Jose Agad Jr. said.