The Department of Agriculture (DA) in collaboration with the local government unit of Ragay, Earthkeepers, Caritas, Diocese of Libmanan , and Most Holy Trinity Parish recently launched the Farmer’s Field School on Organic Rice, Hog and Chicken Production.
The project was conceptualized in support to the Organic Act of 2010, which promote organic farming, or a chemical-free agricultural method. It also aims to promote a healthier citizenry and an environment-friendly atmosphere.
According to Ragay Mayor Ricky Aquino , the LGU of Ragay gives priority to agriculture. He is happy that Organic Farming is being piloted in their town as this will encourage more farmers to engage in farming without using chemical inputs.
With this, the impact of over use of chemical fertilizers to our health and to the environment will be minimized, Aquino said.
He was also thankful to Congressman Rolando Andaya Jr. for establishing the Training Center on Organic Farming in Ragay. The training center will serve as a venue for trainings and other activities related to this project.
DA Regional Executive Director Jose V. Dayao said that this is the first training on organic rice production in the region and this will serve as a kick off activity for the organic farming project in the region.
He emphasized that Agri-Pinoy aims to promote active participation not only among local government unit (LGU) officials but also among farmers, non-government organizations (NGOs), and private sectors for agricultural development. He said the program is based on the principles of sustainable agriculture, natural resource-based management, food security, and local development, among others.
Dayao said that Agri-Pinoy, adopted a slogan “Bridging the Gap, Touching the Heart” which implies local development, sustainable agriculture, natural resources management and food security. Local development aims for people empowerment and self-governance, while sustainable agriculture focuses on environmental health and crop diversification. Moreover, natural resources management goes for water and soil conservation and biodiversity preservation, whereas food security aims to have self-sufficiency and improved nutrition among Bicolanos.
Speakers during the training were: Teresa P. Saniano and Dante S. Delima from Earthkeepers. Earthkeepers is an active non-government organization (NGO) on organic farming based in Tiaong, Quezon. – Mabelle R. Ilan