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Vol. XXVIII No. 1

A monthly publication of the Department of Agriculture

January 2013

Agri grows by 2.9% in 2012 Bannered by the crops, poultry and livestock subsectors, the country’s agriculture industry grew by 2.92 percent (%) in 2012, grossing P1.4 trillion at current prices. Agriculture Secretary Proceso J. Alcala said the three subsectors — which accounted for 82% of total farm output — posted a combined growth of 3.6%. The fisheries subsector, which shared 18% to total production, dipped by 0.04%, mainly due to a 3.9% decline in municipal fish catch. The crops subsector played a major role, despite the adverse effects of typhoons and floods last year, as palay (paddy rice) and corn posted record harvests of 18.03 million metric tons (MT) and 7.41 million MT, respectively. Secretary Alcala said the record palay harvest — which was 8% more than the 2011 output of 16.68 million MT — was attributed to the 3.4% increase in total area harvested, totaling 4.69 million hectares versus 4.54 million hectares in 2011. He said more farmers were encouraged to plant immediately after the 2012 summer crop so

they could harvest by August or September, and thereafter do a ‘Quick-Turn-Around’ (QTA) or plant again by mid-September. “Our efforts are paying off, and we would like to implement similar early planting and QTA schemes, and cover more areas to attain our sufficiency target of 20 million MT by end of 2013,” said the DA chief. Further, the average harvest of palay increased by 4.3%, from 3.68 MT in 2011 to 3.84 MT last year, equivalent to 160 kilograms (about 3.2 cavans) per hectare. This was due to the availability of more affordable quality rice seeds, as the DA provided farmers’ groups and Irrigators’ Asso(Pls turn to p11)

DA grants Quezon ARBs P33-M farm equipment, inputs.

Agriculture Secretary Alcala (3rd from right) joins Agrarian Reform Secretary Virgilio de los Reyes (left), Human Rights Commission chairperson Loreta Ann Rosales (2nd from right), and National Anti-Poverty Commission Secretary Joel Rocamora (right) as they meet 1,000 agrarian reform farmer-beneficiaries from Bondoc Peninsula, during an awarding ceremony in Mulanay, Quezon, February 6, 2013. The DA provided them P33-million worth of farm equipment and inputs to increase their productivity and incomes.

SPJA: ‘Ensure sufficiency in rice, staples’ Agriculture Secretary Proceso J. Alcala urged top DA officials to ensure that sufficiency in major staples, particularly rice and corn, is attained this year. “Tiyakin nating abutin ang mga target sa ilalim ng Food Staples Sufficiency Program o FSSP, lalo na sa bigas,” said Secretary

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Alcala during the DA’s 2013 1 quarter national management committee meeting, January 3031, in Legazpi City. He said while there are still many who doubt that rice sufficiency could be attained, President Aquino himself is confident that it could be done. It is the big challenge to all DA family officials, especially so that 2013 has been declared by President Aquino as ‘National Year of Rice,’ the DA chief said. “Bagamat may mga hindi pa rin maniwalang kakayanin natin ito, malaki ang pananalig ng (Pls turn to p2)

DA, DAR launch P17-B crop insurance coverage The Department of Agriculture through the Philippine Crop Insurance Corporation (PCIC) has partnered with the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) to provide up to P17-billion worth of crop insurance protection to agrarian reform beneficiaries (ARBs) over the next two cropping seasons. The joint initiative is to date the single biggest group insurance plan issued by the DA-PCIC that will benefit tens of thousands of farmers, said (Pls turn to p12)

DA crafts disaster preparedness, rehab program

Secretary Alcala hands over a symbolic certificate to Albay Governor Joey Salceda, representing P9-million worth of farm equipment and inputs for Albay farmers, in Legazpi City, January 30, 2013. Also shown (from left) are former DA Bicol regional director Jose Dayao, newly-appointed DA Bicol regional director Abelardo Bragas, Assistant Secretary and national rice program coordinator Dante Delima.

The Department of Agriculture is crafting a disaster preparedness, response and rehabilitation program to cushion off the adverse and destructive impacts of typhoons, floods and drought on the country’s agriculture and fishery sector. Agriculture Secretary Proceso J. Alcala said the entire DA family should be prepared to surmount the challenges posed by natural calamities, and protect the gains and livelihood of the

country’s farmers and fisherfolk, including public investments like irrigation systems, postharvest facilities, and farm-to-market roads. “Let’s harmonize our efforts and resources, as we craft a comprehensive disaster preparedness program to better protect farming and fishing areas against typhoons and floods,” said the DA chief, on January 17, 2013, at the opening of a three(Pls turn to p4)


Editorial Bunga ng malaking pagangat ng produksyon ng palay at mais noong nakaraang taon, sa kabila pa man ng dagok na dulot ng bagyong Pablo na humirit sa huling buwan ng 2012, magandang simula ang kinakaharap ng Philippine agriculture sa pagpasok ng 2013. Ito ang inihayag ni Kalihim Procy Alcala sa mga pinuno ng buong Kagawaran sa kanilang unang pulong ng DA management committee sa Legazpi City. Aniya, umabot sa halos tatlong porsyento ang itinaas ng produksyon ng buong sektor ng sakahan at pangisdaan. Tumaas ang produksyon ng palay sa 18 milyong tonelada (MT), at ng mais sa 7.4 mily0ng MT noong 2012 – pinakamalaking ani sa buong kasaysayan ng bansa. Ito’y nakamit ng ating masisipag na magsasaka dahil na rin sa mga makabuluhang interbensyon na pinagulong ng Kagawaran, kabilang na ang pamamahala ng mas pinabuting irigasyon, pamamahagi ng mataas na uri ng binhi, at mekanisasyon sa mga sakahan. Naglaan din ng mas malaking pautang ang pamahalaan at naglaan ng

SPJA: Ensure ...

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ating Pangulong Aquino na kaya nating abutin ang minimithing kasapatan sa bigas. “Kaya ito ang hamon sa atin. Pagtulungan nating patunayan na ‘Sapat na bigas, kaya ng Pinas’,” he added. The DA targets to produce 20 million MT this year, making the country 100 per cent sufficient. To achieve it, the DA will encourage farmers to plant early

Magandang pagtatapos, magandang simula pondo para sa pamimili ng palay sa mga magsasaka. Dahil dito, tinataya na kaunti na lamang bigas ang ating aangkatin sa taong ito, na pag ‘buffer stock’ na lamang, kung sakaling muli tayong mabiyayaan nang magandang panahon ng ating Maykapal. Marami-rami ring mga magsasaka ang makikinabang ngayong taon dahil palalawigin ng DANational Food Authority ang pamimili ng palay sa mga magsasaka, lalo na sa mga liblib na komunidad, nang maipagbili nila sa mataas na presyo, hanggang P17 kada kilo, ang kanilang palay. Bukod sa mga agricultural infrastructure at intervention, malaki ang naitulong ng pakikiharap at pakikipagusap ni Sec Procy sa mga magsasaka, mangingisda, pinunong-lokal at mga pangunahing katuwang sa sektor ng agrikultura. Aniya: “Bukod sa nailapit natin sa mga kababayang maralita ang mga programa ng pamahalaan para sa mas maunlad na buhay, nanumbalik at naging mas malalim ang kanilang tiwala sa atin.” At dahil nga sa tiwalang ipinagkaloob ni Pangulong Aquino sa kanya at sa buong pamilya ng Department of Agriculture, nararapat

lamang na doble-kayod ang lahat upang ipatupad ang Food Staples Sufficiency Program (FSSP), at samasama nating kamtin ang kasapatan sa bigas at iba pang pangunahing pagkain. Positibo si Sec Procy na pagkaraan ng 2013 (na idineklara ring National Year of Rice), buong pagmamalaki na nating masasabing: ‘Sapat na bigas, Kaya ng Pinas!’ Kaya naman hiling niya na lalo pang paigtingin ang pagkakaisa at kooperasyon ng mga pinuno ng iba’t-ibang bureau, attached agency at opisina ng buong pamilya ng Kagawaran ng Pagsasaka. Hiling din nya na lalong pang palakasin ang kanilang pakikipag-ugnayan sa mga pinunong lokal, gayundin sa mga Kinatawan ng bawat Distrito, para sa mas matagumpay na pagpapatupad ng mga programa sa sakahan at pangisdaan, alinsunod sa ‘matuwid na daan.’ Kung tutuusin tuwid namang maituturing ang daan na tinatahak ng Kagawaran base na rin na pagkilalang iginawad ng National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) noong nakaraang taon. Tumanggap ng ‘Good Practice Award’ mula sa NEDA ang Mindanao Rural Development Program

(MRDP2) at Infrastructure for Rural Productivity Enhancement Sector (InFRES) Project — dahil sa kanilang mahusay na pagpapatupad ng mga proyektong imprastraktura at pangkabuhayan. Nawa’y ang parangal na ito’y madagdagan pa sa susunod na mga taon. Ito ang hamon ni Sec Procy sa buong pamilya ng DA na lalo pang palakasin ang ating pakikipagtulungan sa mga LGU, pribadong sektor, at sa mga samahan ng mga magsasaka at mangingisda — upang maramdaman ng ating mga maliliit at kapus-palad na kababayan sa kanayunan ang mga programa at proyekto na layuning baguhin at iangat ang kanilang dahop na kabuhayan. Kaya naman ang kanyang panawagan ay ipagpatuloy pa ang sama-samang pagsisikap upang higit na makapaglingkod ng tapat sa bayan. Hangad niya’y dumami pa ang mga kapatid natin sa kanayunan na kung tatanungin ano ang kanilang trabaho ay taas-noo at buong-pagmamalaki nilang sasagutin: “Magsasaka, baket!”

this year right after the summer crop, and then do a ‘quick-turnaround’ or QTA immediately after the main season on or before September 15, 2013, that will cover at least 300,000 hectares. For the QTA, the DA will provide participating farmers with free certified seeds and crop insurance coverage. Further, to encourage more farmers to plant and produce rice this year, the DA chief has instructed the National Food Au-

thority to intensify its palay procurement to serve more farmers, particularly in remote areas, and benefit from its P17 per kilo buying price. The NFA targets to buy at least 615,000 MT this year. The DA will also expand its Sikat-Saka credit program to cover the country’s top 20 rice producing provinces. The agency also aims to produce at least eight million MT of corn this year, enabling it to attain 100 percent sufficiency. Surplus yellow corn production will be exported, in partnership with the private sector, Alcala said. He also urged concerned DA officials to complete the respective roadmap of major commodities, particularly those that have big impact on the livelihood and incomes of small farmers and fisherfolk. Further, he asked DA family officials to complete their respective disaster risk reduction and rehabilitation program, to prevent the destructive effects of typhoons and floods, and protect

the harvests and livelihood of small farmers and fisherfolk, and infrastructure like irrigation systems, postharvest facilities and trading centers. He also urged the DA regional directors and other concerned officials to sustain the agency’s strong partnership with the local government units and the private sector. He said right after the May 2013 elections, the DA regional directors should meet and brief the winning LGU officials on the DA’s maj or programs and thrusts. He also urged them to strengthen partnership with the private sector, and establish more ‘value-chain’ enterprises to benefit more small farmers’ and fishers’ groups. The DA ManCom was attended by 100 participants, including undersecretaries, assistant secretaries, heads of regional field units, bureaus, attached agencies, corporations, commodity programs, OSEC services, and foreign-assisted projects.

is published monthly by the Department of Agriculture Information Service, Elliptical Road, Diliman, Quezon City. Tel. nos. 9288762 loc 2148, 2150, 2155, 2156 or 2184; 9204080 or tel/fax 9280588. This issue is available in PDF file. For copies, please send requests via email: da_afis @yahoo.com. Editor-In-Chief : Noel O. Reyes Associate Editors: Cheryl C. Suarez & Adora D. Rodriguez Writers: Adora D. Rodriguez, Arlhene S. Carro, Bethzaida N. Bustamante, Catherine N. Nanta Contributors: DA-RFU Info Officers, Public Info Officers of DA Bureaus, Attached Agencies & Corporations, MRDP & other ForeignAssisted Projects Photographers: Jose Lucas, Alan Jay Jacalan & Kathrino Resurreccion Lay-out Artist: Bethzaida N. Bustamante Printing & Circulation: Teresita Abejar & PCES Staff

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PRDP to commence in mid-2013 The Department of Agriculture is set to roll out by third quarter this year its biggest foreign-assisted project, called the Philippine Rural Development Program (PRDP). The initiative is up for approval by the National Economic Development Authority (NEDA) Board, chaired by President Benigno S. Aquino III. Thereafter, it will be submitted to the World Bank (W B) for evaluation, approval and funding. The PRDP will be implemented for six years. It will cost about $670 million or P27.5 billion to cover as many qualified local government units and farmers’ and fishers’ groups in the entire country. Agriculture Secretary Proceso J. Alcala said the PRDP aims to establish a government platform for a modern, climate-smart, and market-oriented agriculture and fishery sector. “The PRDP will build on the gains of the Mindanao Rural Development Program (MRDP) by improving on and replicating its various projects throughout the country,” the DA chief added. The MRDP is currently implemented in 225 towns in all provinces in Mindanao. The PRDP has four components, namely: investments in agri-fishery modernization plans of LGUs or I-Plan; intensified building up of infrastructure and logistics for development or IBUILD; investments in rural enterprises and agriculture and fisheries productivity or I-REAP; and implementation support or ISUPPORT. Secretary Alcala said the PRDP will complement the DA’s major initiatives particularly in reducing poverty, creating broadbased or inclusive growth, and creating more jobs and livelihood opportunities. Two-thirds of the PRDP funds is alloted for infrastructure projects (68%) or about P18.5 billion, while one-fourth (25%) or P6.9 billion will be used to bankroll value-chain agri-fishery enterprises, said MRDP Deputy Director Arnel V. De Mesa, who also serves as the interim PRDP deputy director. DA Undersecretary for operations Joel Rudinas serves as PRDP interim program director. “Mindanao will lead the implementation as we already have the experience and have been consistently rated satisfactory by the World Bank,” said MRDP Deputy Director Arnel V. De

January 2013

Mesa. He said due to the favorable performance of the Mindanao LGUs, the WB has allowed retroactive funding for projects in Mindanao. “This means we can implement PRDP projects as early as January of 2013, ahead of everyone else in the country and that’s to our advantage,” he said. (Sherwin Manual, DA-MRDP)

DA eyes more organic farms, agri-tourism sites The Department of Agriculture is encouraging more farmers, entrepreneurs, hobbyists and overseas Filipino workers to establish organic farms that will serve as agri-tourism sites. Agriculture Secretary Proceso J. Alcala made the pitch as he commended a model organic farmer from Laguna, Ronald Costales, and presented him a certificate as an accredited technology extension provider, during the 26th anniversary celebration of the Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Training Institute (ATI), January 28, 2013. The DA chief said Costales owns a ‘nature farm’ in Majayjay, Laguna, frequently visited by Filipino and foreign tourists, and boasts of being the first agri-tourism site accredited by the Department of Tourism. He was chosen as the country’s best organic farmer in 2012, under the Gawad Saka, sponsored by the DA honoring the country’s outstanding achievers in agriculture and fisheries. He is also considered a ‘magsasaka-siyentista’ by both the DA and DOST.His farm features an integrated natural farming system producing organic vegetables, fruits, fish, poultry and livestock. Costales has adopted Japanese and Korean natural farming systems. Secretary Alcala said he wants to see more Costales’s in the years to come, as the Aquino government promotes both agriculture and tourism.In fact, President Aquino cited agriculture and tourism as priority investments areas in the country, during a speech at the World Economic Forum, in Davos, Switzerland. The forum was held on January 23 to 27, 2013. (Pls see story on page 9.) During the ATI anniversary, Secretary Alcala also inaugu(Pls turn to p11)

Secretary Alcala shares with the officers and members of the Rotary Club of Manila (RCM) the agricultural sector milestones achieved by the Aquino administration, during the Club’s January 17, 2013, meeting at the Manila Polo Club. He said efforts of the DA in partnership with farmers’ and fishers’ groups, LGUs, and the private sector, including socio-civic clubs like RCM are on the right track towards attaining sufficiency in rice, corn and major staples by end of 2013. Top photo also shows RCM president Roberto Pagdanganan (2nd from right), and other RCM officials.

PCA to focus on non-traditional products To benefit more small coconut farmers and their families, the Department of Agriculture through the Philippine Coconut Authority (DA-PCA) will focus more attention and allot more resources in producing non-traditional products like coco water, coco milk, coco sap sugar, virgin coconut oil, coco flour, coir, fiber, charcoal and other by-products. Agriculture Secretary Proceso J. Alcala said “this is contained in our coconut roadmap, which also entails the establishment of village enterprises nationwide, to benefit small coconut farming communities who will produce in a sustainable basis fresh nontraditional coconut products for both domestic and export markets.” The DA-PCA will implement the roadmap in partnership with coconut farmers’ groups, the LGUs and the private sector. As part of the roadmap, PCA Administrator Euclides Forbes said the agency targets to plant this year 17.5 million coconut seedlings nationwide. From July 2010 to December 2012, he said the PCA under the Aquino administration has already planted 238 million coconut trees. If it achieves the target this year, it would establish a record of 255.5 million seedlings

planted by end of 2013, for an average of 73 million coconut trees yearly. This is more than double the average annual coconut planting under previous administrations, Administrator Forbes said. This year, he said the PCA has a P1.7-billion budget, which it will use for major initiatives, that include replanting and fertilization of about 20 million trees. Majority of the budget will be used for planting and fertilization projects, and about one-third or P567 million will be used for intercropping, research, training, and in market development and promotion of non-traditional coconut products and by-products. Another P300 million is alloted for the KAANIB or “Kasaganaan sa Niyugan ay Kaunlaran ng Bayan” program. KAANIB project sites feature coconut planting and replanting, coconut fertilization; intercropping and livestock raising (carabao, cattle, swine, goat and poultry); establishment of coconut seednut nurseries; and semiprocessing and marketing of coconut products like coconut coir dust, coco peat as organic fertilizer, coco coir into geotextiles, coconut sap into vinegar and sugar, coconut shell into charcoal. “To date, there about 100 (Pls turn to p7)

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DA chief asks agri attaches to increase farm exports Agriculture Secretary Proceso J. Alcala has instructed the country’s agricultural attaches to find ways to increase exports of Philippine farm and fishery products, and improve the country’s balance of trade. “Help conclude trade transactions. Understand our products and find ways to break barriers for the benefit our farmers, fishers and agri-fishery stakeholders,” said Secretary Alcala, during his recent meeting with the DA’s foreign agriculture service corps (FASC). “In one of my meetings with the President, he pointed out that we have unfavorable balance of trade in agriculture with so many countries. I acknowledged that the DA has not given enough attention and effort on this. This is one of your immediate tasks – to look into the existing trade relations, and find ways to improve our balance of trade in agriculture,” the DA chief noted. Currently, the DA has 12 agriculture attaches deployed in eight countries, namely: Washington, USA; Beijing, China; Dubai, UAE; Brussels, Belgium; Bangkok, Thailand; Rome, Italy; Tokyo, Japan; and Geneva, Switzerland. He also urged them to go beyond the initial trial exports by helping the private sector sustain exporting non-traditional products like fancy and aromatic rice, and meat products, as the Philippines remains free from the foot and mouth disease (FMD) and avian flu. “Assist them by finding out the requirements and procedures in target markets,” he noted. Further, he asked them to help promote Philippine organic agriculture products by linking Filipino producers and processors with prospective exporters, and helping them comply with requirements in target markets. In 2011, the country’s total farm imports reached $7.78 billion (B) versus $5.39B worth of exports, for a trade balance of $2.39B, according to the National Statistics Office (NSO). Among its five major trading partners, however, the Philippines enjoys a positive balance of agricultural trade with Japan and the European Union (EU) at $515 million and $460 million, respectively, NSO figures show. The country’s other major trading partners are the USA, ASEAN and Australia.

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Farm exports to Japan in 2011 totaled $652 million, led by banana ($250M), coconut oil ($77M), pineapple ($51M), sugar ($44M) and tuna ($28M). The Philippines imported $136-million worth of Japanese agricultural products in 2011, led by fertilizers ($52M). The Philippines exported to Europe various agricultural products worth $1.066 billion, led by coconut oil ($600M), tuna ($91M), seaweeds and carageenan ($45M), dessicated coconut ($42M), and pineapple products ($11M). On the other hand, the country imported $606M worth of European farm items, led by milk and milk products ($44M). Finally, the DA chief asked the agricultural attaches to submit their respective 2013 plans and targets, and provide him updates and breakthroughs in trade ne-

DA crafts disaster ...

Secretary Alcala (standing) urges top DA officials to harmonize their efforts and resources in crafting a comprehensive disaster preparedness, response and rehabilitation program to cushion off the destructive impacts of typhoons and floods on the country’s agriculture and fishery sector. He said the entire DA family should be prepared to surmount the challenges posed by natural calamities and protect the gains and livelihood of the country’s farmers and fisherfolk, including public investments like irrigation systems, postharvest facilities, and farm-to-market roads. He issued the directive during a disaster preparedness workshop, January 17-19, 2013, at the PICC in Manila, attended by 300 participants. gotiations. The agricultural attaches came over for their biennial meeting with the DA Secretary and briefing with other DA family agencies

and officials, from January 14 to 22, 2013. They also visited several DA regional offices and projects in Davao, Iloilo and Aklan.

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day orientation and workshop on disaster preparedness, response and rehabilitation, at the PICC, in Manila. “We hope to come up with a better, more effective scheme that would serve as a template for centralized and organized reporting before, during, and after calamities or disasters. It could serve as a model for our ASEAN neighbors, who are likewise visited by tropical storms and typhoons during monsoon season,” the DA chief said. On the aftermath of typhoon ‘Pablo’ in Davao region, Secretary Alcala commended the DA regional directors in Mindanao and Visayas who took the initiative of providing farm inputs and machinery to enable affected farmers and fisherfolk in Compostela Valley, Davao Oriental, del Norte and del Sur, and Davao City recover and start anew. He said as result of the quick response and coordination of DA regional directors in five regions (10, 12, 13, 6 and 7), they were able to mobilize an initial 16 4wheel tractors and deployed them to typhoon affected towns

in Davao region. (Pls see related stories on page 5.) He designated assistant secretary and national rice program coordinator Dante Delima to head ‘Task Force Alayon’ that oversees and implements the rehabilitation of farming and fishing communities affected by typhoon ‘Pablo.’ The workshop was attended by 300 DA family officials, led by DA undersecretary for operations Joel S. Rudinas, assistant secretaries Delima, Edilberto de Luna (for corn), and Salvador Salacup (for fisheries). The participants included heads of DA bureaus and attached agencies, and national and regional coordinators of commodity banner programs (rice, corn, high value crops, fisheries and livestock), and regional directors of DA, Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR), National Irrigation Administration (NIA), and Philippine Coconut Authority (PCA). During the three-day workshop, they briefed on the weather bulletins and impacts, and climate outlook for the 1st quarter of 2013 by weather spe-

cialist Vicente Manalo III of the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA). Undersec-retary Rudinas also discussed the imperatives of building a responsive DA-wide disaster risk reduction and management organization. For his part, Assistant Secretary Delima talked on making an early and quick recovery from a disaster, and updated the participants sharing the DA’s initiatives in Davao after typhoon ‘Pablo.’ The DA also invited Director Carmencita Delantar of the Department of Budget and Management, who discussed ‘funding disaster risk reduction’ interventions and projects. The participants were also briefed on how to properly conduct damage and loss assessment, and discussed through their respective workshop groups several major concerns like: organization and protocols; early recovery, mid- and longterm rehabilitation; damage and loss assessment; and computation of damages.


DA allots P620M to rehab ‘Pablo’ affected farms The Department of Agriculture has to date allotted P620 million to sustain efforts of rehabilitating and putting back into productive use thousands of hectares of farmlands in Davao region damaged by typhoon ‘Pablo’ last December 2013. In a report to Secretary Proceso J. Alcala, DA Davao regional director Remelyn Recoter said the amount is composed of two tranches, the first amounted to P230 million which was used for speedy interventions, and the balance of P390 million is allotted for medium- and long-term projects. The ‘first wave’ of assistance included provision of seeds (rice, corn, vegetables), planting materials (durian, rambutan, lanzones, cacao, soybean, cassava seed pieces), veterinary supplies for livestock, mobilization of paraveterinarians, motorized and non-motorized bancas, and new stocks of swine, breeder goats, carabao, and native chicken. Of the P260-M initial rehabilitation fund, P100 M will be used to repair damaged small scale, communal and river irrigation projects, as flatbed dryers, and provision of farm tractors, other machinery and equipment. Another P33.35M was used to assist small banana farmers through the provision of new planting materials, fertilizers, farm tools and equipment, and cash-for-work clearing and planting activities worth P1,500 per hectare, not exceeding five hectares. The DA will provide the same cash-for-work rate should farmers decide to convert their banana farms and plant rice, cacao, corn or other crops, said Director Recoter. The DA also provided fuel and gas subsidy for tractors that were used for clearing and land preparation activities in the provinces of Davao Oriental, Compostela Valley and Davao del Norte. Director Recoter said of the ‘second wave’ of interventions worth P390 million, P100M is allocated for the rehabilitation of small water impounding projects (SWIPs), and flatbed dryers and warehouses, establishment of two rice processing complex (worth P15M each), and provision of shallow tube wells (STWs), surface pumps and fourwheel tractors. The DA will provide training and funds for the construction of paddy dikes, and other cash-forwork activities, which will be done in coordination with the NIA and

January 2013

DSWD. The DA will continue to provide farmers assorted vegetables seeds, seedlings of cacao, coffee and rubber, seeds hybrid corn and white corn, corn mill, and fuel subsidy for corn field preparation. As for long-term interventions, the DA will conduct a series of training on providing ‘disaster medical services,’ and establishment of ‘sagip-hayop’ shelters. It will also continue to distribute veterinary drugs, biologics and feed supplements, rehabilitate damaged abattoirs, and establish provincial native chicken hatchery and dispersal center, and artificial insemination centers. The DA through the Philippine Coconut Authority (PCA) will continue to clear damaged coconut areas, transform felled trees into coconut lumber, conduct coconut replanting and fertilization, and implement a biological rhino control program. Meanwhile, the DA through Agricultural Credit and Policy Council (ACPC) has implemented a special agricultural financing for ‘Pablo’ affected farmers and fisherfolk, who can borrow up to P150,000 to rehabilitate their

The DA Region 12 (Soccsksargen), led by Dir. Amalia Datukan, has extended assistance to help rehabilitate typhoon Pablo affected farms in Davao region, by lending eight units of 4-wheel drive tractors. Photo shows two of the tractors prepare farm paddies in Compostela. (Photo by DA-RAFID 12) farms, fishponds, fish cages or buy new fishing boat and paraphernalia. The loan, which carries an eight percent interest plus four percent service fee, should be paid fully within a year. The DA has also provided the interventions to help small banana growers, which included: cash for work - through clearing

... seeks additional P1.6B from DBM To sustain the rehabilitation and restoration of damaged farms and rural infrastructure particularly irrigation systems, the DA has requested the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) for an additional budget of P1.6 billion (B). Agriculture Assistant Secretary and Task Force ‘Alayon’ chair Dante Delima said the amount is needed to complete the rehabilitation operations. He said as of January 8, 2013, about P155 million in the form of palay and corn seeds, fruit trees and coconut planting materials, farm tools and equipment, among others, have already been turnedover to different farmers’ groups in the typhoon-ravaged areas.

He said 15,900 bags of certified palay seeds were sourced from other rice producing provinces in Regions 8, 10, 11, 12 and 13, and were delivered to affected areas. For corn, 16,520 bags of open pollinated variety (OPV) seeds are set to be delivered, too. Of the proposed P1.6 B additional budget, the DA plans to allocate P726 M for the repair of irrigation systems, P337 M for coconut, P134 M for livestock, P112 M for rice, P91 M for corn,

P32 M for high value crops, P30M for abaca, P29 M for fishery interventions through the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources; P1 M for the Bureau of Plant Industry and P322,500 for the Agricultural Training Institute.

operations of their farms, at P 1,500/ha for a maximum of 5 hectares, fertilizer and farm tools; and cash for work - through conversion of their banana farms into rice or cacao. These interventions were done in collaboration with the Provincial Governments and DSW D, said Dir. Recoter. (DA Region 11 Info Div. & DA-AFIS)

He said total damage caused by typhoon Pablo reached more than P30B, with Compostela Valley bearing the brunt with damages pegged at P13 B; followed by Davao Oriental at P10 B and Davao del Norte at P6 B. Davao del Sur and Davao City suffered minimal losses.

NFA to buy more palay this year Complying with the instruction of Secretary Alcala, the National Food Authority (NFA) will buy more palay this year. Newly-installed NFA Administrator Orlan A. Calayag said the agency will buy up to 615,985 metric tons (MT) of palay this year. “For us to finally achieve rice self sufficiency, we need to help our farmers produce more and provide a ready market for their produce,” Calayag said. He said the NFA will implement new procurement strategies to encourage more farmers to sell their harvest to the food agency instead of through private traders. To start with, the NFA will lend empty sacks to farmers’ organizations, deploy and operate palay buying stations in far-flung areas, coordinate with the Mu-

nicipal Agriculture Office (MAO) and survey areas where harvesting is ongoing, and deploy mobile procurement teams especially in areas where palay farmgate prices are low. Currently, the agency buys clean and dry palay at P17 per kilo (kg). It gives additional incentives, totalling up to P1 per kg, that include graduated delivery fee up to P0.50/kg, drying incentive fee of P0.20/kg, and CDIF of P0.30/kg. “We need to give farmers a better deal so they would be motivated to produce more,” Calayag said. The NFA has also simplified its requirements so it could serve more farmers. Individual farmers need only submit to NFA a certification from either their MAO or Municipal (Pls turn to p11)

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St. Joseph BFT: A food hub at the foot of Sierra Madre At the foot of Sierra Madre Mountains, the longest range in the country, rests the humble village of Barangay Belance which is part of the Dupax del Norte town. Its unlikely location, keeps it isolated from Nueva Vizcaya’s business area. The village is populated by Igorots and Bugkalots from Benguets, Ilokanos and Tagalogs who migrated in the area during the late 70’s and 80’s and worked under companies which are engaged in logging and sawmills. The residents rely mainly from their local produce. Life is generally poor as characterized by the backward agricultural economy and poor infrastructures especially road networks. To reach the nearest public market, residents need to take 1 ½ hour jeepney rides and spend P140 in fare. Thus, commodities sold in the area are marked up at exorbitant prices. Overcoming all adversities The seemingly unbearable situation pushed the members

Various greens, fruits and, vegetables are sold at the BFT. of the St. Joseph Parish MultiPurpose Cooperative (SJPMPC) to seek assistance from the government, and on December 28, 2010, their request for a barangay food terminal (BFT) was granted by the Department of Agriculture (DA).

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Initially, the group received Along with this, the BFT P166, 315.50 in funding. Half provides regular employment to of the amount was used to six staff and apportions a part procure goods to be sold in the of their income to a community BFT, while the remaining amount was used to buy facilities and equipment, and was allotted for the store’s operating expenses. The Barangay Belance Food Terminal, hence, became a trading center where local farmers and producers can bring and sell their Residents in the barangay products. It was and neighboring villages buy their food supply at the BFT. an outlet for Members of St. Joseph BFT homegrown are patronizing the project vegetables and due to the patronage refund/ livestock which incentive they can get. brought opportunities for the local households to earn additional income. development fund. The resiThe food depot supplies the dents, on the other hand, are community with agricultural and able to save from transportafishery products such as tion expenses and buy highquality goods that are generally cheaper than those sold at the nearest market From its initial funding, the Belance BFT has doubled its assets and monthly income reached P38, 828.45 after a year of operation. The income is equitably shared among members through the distribution of dividends and patronage refund.

vegetables, fruits, fish meat, poultry, rice, dried fish, sugar, cooking oil and beans, which are readily available to customers. Apart from helping the farmers in marketing their produce, the terminal also provides technical and financial assistance to farmers.

Continuously serving the people’s need During the onslaught of typhoons Pedring and Quiel, Barangay Belance was among the many areas in Region II isolated due to landslide. Fortunately, the BFT was able to provide the basic food needs of the community. It was also able to share 20% of its income

By Catherine Nanta to the members thru a patronage refund. At the same time, it was able to contribute 10% of

their income to the community development fund. To date, the BFT has established linkage to 35 vegetable producers, one supplier of fish, 14 hog raisers, and seven fruit suppliers thereby, ensuring a continuous supply of commodities not only for the local community but also for the residents of the neighboring barangays. To improve its service to the consumers and members of the cooperative, SJPMPC has started the construction of a slaughterhouse at the back of the food terminal building. Likewise, three satellite stores—in Binuangan, Oyao, and Macabenga, all in Dupax del Norte—are underway. The co-op is also planning to venture into vegetable processing to minimize losses and add a source of income. With its continuous dedication to the local residents, the BFT was recently ranked as among the Most Outstanding Barangay Food Terminal Projects in the Gawad Saka National Search, a proof that adversities must not hinder success but open opportunities.


BPI plays key role in food sufficiency program The Bureau of Plant Industry (BPI) plays a major role in the government’s goal to attain food sufficiency, particularly in sustaining the growth and development of the country’s crop industry. Thus said Secretary Alcala, as he commended the men and women of the BPI, led by Director Clarito Barron, during the agency’s 83 rd anniversary celebration, January 24, 2013, in San Andres, Manila. He said the DA through the BPI, in partnership with farmers’ groups and the private sector, has contributed in the sustained growth and development of the country’s crop industry, which last year grew by 4.1 percent, with a total value of P797.7 billion at current prices. The crop subsector contributed more than one-half (51.5%) of the total agriculture production, which increased by 2.92% last year, despite several typhoons that hit the country. The DA chief also urged the men and women of the DA-BPI to be pro-active in providing needed services and interventions to make the country’s crop sector ‘climatesmart’ and compliant to international food safety standards, and further enhance the competitiveness of Philippine fruits and vegetables in the world market. “Let’s protect diligently our border’s safety. Not only for those products we import, but also for those we export,” Secretary Alcala said. The agri chief also ask the plant quarantine officers to communicate to him whatever intervention needs to be done, to swiftly resolve major issues and concerns. One of the pioneer bureaus under the Department, the BPI is mandated to provide farmers and crop industry stakeholders various technical services and assistance. These include plant genetic resource conservation and management; conduct of researches to improve crop farming systems; production of quality seeds and planting materials; enforcement of plant quarantine laws, rules and regulations; and development of processing technologies on utilization of agricultural crops and its by-products. The agency also provides technical services on farm mechanization, physicochemical, microbiological and

January 2013

Secretary Alcala (right) leads a ceremonial ribbon-cutting to kick off the 83rdanniversary celebration of the Bureau of Plant Industry, January 24, 2013, in San Andres, Manila, with the theme: “Organikong  Paghahalaman:  Magsasaka’y  kikita, kapaligiran sasagana.” Joining him (from right) are BPI Director Clarito Barron, DA-High Value Crops Development Program Director Jennifer Remoquillo, BPI Assistant Director Henry Carpiso, Mrs. Felisa Carpiso and Mrs. Pacita Barron. pesticide residue analysis, seed testing and seed certification, and pest surveillance, control, management and forecasting. During the anniversary program, Secretary Alcala presented awards and commendations to outstanding BPI employees, distributed seeds of organic and aromatic rice varieties to farmers, including fruits and vegetables production guides. For his part, Director Barron cited the agency’s maj or milestones and accomplishments, including the conduct of

DA-PCA ...

(from p 3)

KAANIB sites nationwide, and about 100 more sites will be established this year,” said Administrator Forbes. “We expect that this project will encourage other coconut farmers to adopt and replicate the KAANIB coconut integrated farming system,” he added. This year, the DA-PCA will also focus its replanting initiatives in other suitable areas such as the Ilocos Region, Cagayan Valley, and the Cordilleras. The PCA implements its planting and replanting program through the participatory coconut planting program (PCPP), a cash-for-work program wherein each farmer-participant is paid P20 per seedling produced in a nursery and another P20 after it is planted and grown in the farm. (Marlo Asis, DA Information Service)

more than 100 research studies on crop varietal development. The BPI also imposed stricter measures to ensure that the country’s fruits and vegetables for both domestic and export markets are free from insects and diseases. In particular, it issued a new set of guidelines in the accreditation of exporters, traders, growers, and packing facilities for export of fruits and vegetables. To date, the BPI has accredited 59 banana exporters, 431 banana growers, 74 packing facility operators, and 422 packing facilities. (DA Information Service)

DA-12 supports ‘greening’ program The Department of Agriculture in Region 12 has to date provided at least 14,700 assorted planting materials in support to the National Greening Program, led by by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources. Director Amalia JayagDatukan said all of the regional officers and staff have joined tree planting activities in the cities of Koronadal and General Santos City, where they provided and planted seedlings of coffee, durian, marang, mango, lanzones, rambutan, coconut, cacao and other fruit-bearing trees. These were produced by DA-12 crop research stations. (DA 12 Info Div.)

SRA to sponsor agri scholars Starting school year 20132014, the DA through the Sugar Regulatory Administration (SRA) will help deserving students pursue and complete their respective academic degrees in college and postgraduate levels. It is open to college students, including those who pursue post-graduate courses, enrolled in the University of the Philippines at Los Banos, or in other reputable academic institutions. They should pursue the following courses: agriculture, agriculture engineering, chemical engineering-sugar technology, chemistry and agricultural extension; Those currently enrolled (from freshmen to junior years) are qualified to apply, including graduating high schools students, as well as those pursuing masteral and doctorate degrees. Through the scholarship program, the SRA aims to produce competent technical and extension, and thus help sustain a strong agricultural and industrial research and development program which will propel the Philippine sugar industry to stability and competitiveness in the coming years. Successful applicants will receive financial assistance, benefits and other privileges, like free tuition/miscellaneous fees and allowances for books, clothing, transportation, medical expenses, subsistence, and other expenses. Applicants should be natural-born Filipino citizens, preferably dependents of sugarcane farmers or sugar industry workers. They should not be recipients of other scholarships, and more than 21 years old (for those pursuing undergraduate degrees) or 40 years old (for Masters’ Degree candidates) and 45 years old (for Ph. D). For 4th year high school students, they should belong to the upper 10% of the graduating class. They should have passed the University of the Philippines College Admission Test (UPCAT); Their annual gross family income should not be more than P250,000. For details, please call SRA at tel nos. 455-0446 or 09209090231. (DA-SRA)

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Agriculture Secretary Proceso J. Alcala led the regional launch of the ‘National Year of Rice’ or NYR advocacy campaign, January 31, 2013, in Naga City, and thanked Bicolano farmers and other agriculture stakeholders for doing their share in ensuring that the country attains rice sufficiency by end of 2013. He assured them that the DA in partnership with farmers’ groups, local government units and the private sector is on track in attaining said goal. Addressing some 2,000 farmers, consumers, retailers, fisherfolk and other agri-stakeholders, at the J.M. Robredo Coliseum in Naga City, Secretary Alcala said Bicol is one of the regions that has already attained rice sufficiency, and even exceeded its target. As of last year, it recorded a 113% sufficiency level. At the national level, rice production has increased by 8% from 16.68 million metric tons in 2011 to 18.03 million metric tons last year. It was highest rate of increase recorded in the past 12 years. During the event, he instructed DA Bicol regional officials to raffle off P1.3-million worth of farm items, which included: two units hand tractors with trailer, worth P130,00 each; two units threshers (P85,000 each); two carabaos with implements (P33,000 each); 400 pieces laminated sacks (P500 each), 300 bags of palay seeds (P1,200 each); 24 bags of open pollinated corn seeds (P700 each); and 400 fruit bearing pili trees (P20 each). The DA-BFAR also raffled off five units of 16-HP engine for motorized banca (P30,000 each) and 25 units gillnets (P3,000 each).

i

DA chief leads NYR launch in Bicol

Secretary Alcala (inset) enjoins 2,000 Bicolano farmers (foreground) and other rice industry stakeholders to continue working together to further boost the region’s distinction as a surplus rice producer, during the launch of ‘National Year of Rice’ or NYR advocacy campaign, January 31, 2013, at the J.M. Robredo Coliseum, in Naga City. Last year, Bicol produced more than 1.17 million metric tons of palay, 9.6% more than in 2011, posting a 113% sufficiency level. The Philippine Coconut Authority through deputy administrator Roel M. Rosales also turned over P415,800 worth of checks as incentives for 68 farmers, who planted a total of 29,700 coconut seedlings. The checks were received by Tinambac municipal councillor Francisco Alvarez, on behalf of the farmer-beneficiaries. During the program, Assistant Secretary Dante S. de Lima, national rice program coordinator, presented the overview of the Food Staples Sufficiency Program. For his part, Dr. Eufemio T. Rasco Jr., executive director of Philippine Rice Research Insti-

tute (PhilRice), who is a Bicolano, discussed the rationale and planned activities of the NYR campaign. The observance of the National Year of Rice was declared by President Benigno S. Aquino III last year to enjoin farmers, consumers and other stakeholders to complement the efforts of government in attaining self-sufficiency, raise public awareness on responsible rice consumption, and boost farmer’s morale and motivate them to adopt technologies and good practices to improve farm productivity. During the NYR launch, the DA chief was also joined by Naga City Mayor John S. Bongat, Atty.

Farmers recite the ‘Panatang Makaipalay,’ as other participants sign an NYR commitment board.

Leny G. Robredo (wife of the late DILG Sec. Jesse Robredo), DA assistant secretaries Salvador S. Salacup and Edilberto M. de Luna, PCA deputy administrator Rosales, NIA administrator Antonio S. Nangel, PhilMech executive director Rex L. Bingabing, newly-assumed DA Bicol regional director Engr. Abelardo Bragas, out-going DARegn 5 Dr. Jose V. Dayao, BFAR Regn 5 director Dennis del Socorro, PCA regional director Eduardo Allorde, NIA regional Director William Ragodon, DA Regional technical director for Operations and Extension and focal person for the Rice Program Dr. Elena B. de los Santos and heads of DA attached agencies in the region. A techno clinic participated by DA attached agencies like NFA, NIA, PhilMech, PhilRice, BSWM and PCIC was also held during the NYR launch which afforded the participants the opportunity to consult and relay their issues and concerns to the various DA attached agencies who participated in the event. (Emily B. Bordado, DA Regn 5 Info Div.).

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The NYR was also launched in Region 4-B (Mimaropa), on January 27, 2013, during the “Dugoy Festival” at the Sablayan Sports Complex, in Occidental Mindoro. The launch kicked off with a parade and street dancing participated in by hundreds of farmers, ruralfolk, local government officials, government employees, mediapersons and students from 22 barangays in Sablayan. The ceremony started with the entrance of colors, led by the Sablayan National Comprehensive High School (SABNAHIS) students, followed by the unveiling of the NYR tarpaulin, led by Sablayan Mayor Eduardo B. Gadiano, Vice Mayor Andres D. Dangeros, municipal agriculturist Lina T. de Leon, and DA 4-B rice focal person Theresa Aguilar. PhilRice staffmembers Sheeren Razon and Joy Bartolome Duldulao gave an overview of NYR and discussed the respective roles of farmers, policy-makers and the general public on the NYR advocacy campaign, focusing on prudent rice consumption. Another highlight of the launch was an intermission number of SABNAHIS students who performed a dance rice festival, followed by a recitation of ‘Panatang MakaPalay’ led by Mayor Gadiano. In response to the NYR campaign, Mayor Gadiano said the LGU of Sablayan has issued a policy requiring school canteen and restaurant operators to offer also half-a-cup rice servings, to give consumers an option to limit their rice intake. “Ang Bayan ng Sablayan ay malaki ang kontribusyon sa pagpapanatili ng kasapatan sa bigas sa Pilipinas. “Makilahok ang lahat sa ‘Panatang MakaPalay’ at ipakita ang pagmamahal sa ating palay at bigas, at isa-puso ang ibig

...in Sablayan, Occidental Mindoro sabihin sa nasasaad sa Panatang MakaPalay,” Mayor Gadiano said. For his part, Vice Mayor Dangeros told the crowd: “Isulong at ating suportahan ang lahat ng programang pangsakahan.” NYR tarpaulins were installed at lamp posts and at the entry and exit of the municipality. The event was a joint undertaking of the DA4-B, LGU of Sablayan, and the Department of Education and Culture headed by Mr. Arnaldo Ventura of SABNAHIS. The DA-4B distributed t-shirts, caps and calendars during the parade. NYR slogan contests were also conducted in schools, and the winning slogans were showcased during the parade. (DA 4B Info Div.)

Municipal officials of Sablayan, Occidental Mindoro, led by Mayor Eduardo Gadiano, unveil the ‘National Year of Rice’ (NYR) tarp, as students look on.

P-Noy invites global leaders to invest in Phl President Benigno S. Aquino III has invited European global business leaders at the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland, to explore potential areas of investments in the Philippines, as he cited some of the reforms initiated by the government to achieve inclusive growth. He urged them to invest in three priority sectors: agriculture, tourism and infrastructure. “All three sectors represent areas that are already exhibiting rapid growth, among others that have shown resilience and strength over the past years,” he said. In the agriculture sector, the President said, the Philippines is on its way to becoming a rice exporter. “Since I came into office, our

government has been working towards rice self-sufficiency by going back to the basics and helping our farmers through improved irrigation systems and a genuine certified seeds program,” the President said. “Rice production has been increasing, and through these methods, we are on our way towards our next goal: becoming an exporter of rice,” he added. On the country’s revitalized coconut industry, President Aquino said that in 2011, the Philippines has exported more than 16.7 million liters of coco water, up from the 483,862 liters of coco water in 2009. He noted that that the coco coir fiber, transformed into geotextile materials, has among oth-

RP, Seychelles to forge agri-fishery deal The Department of Agriculture will enter into a bilateral agreement with Seychelles, an African island-nation in the Indian Ocean, on agriculture and fisheries this year. Secretary Proceso J. Alcala, Alcala, who recently met with the Seychellois Ambassador to the Philippines Philippe Le Gall, said the Philippines could export various food products to Seychelles, which in turn could grant the Philippines access to fish in Seychelles waters, in the Indian Ocean. The African state is a group of islands. It has abundant marine

January 2013

ers, been found effective in erosion control. He added that the DPWH is already using this technology in their projects. The President invited the businessmen here to meet with their counterparts in the Philippine business community to know what the investment opportunities are, and learn from their experience of doing business under the Aquino administration. “Those who have already bet on the Philippines have not been disappointed; they have seen the sincerity of our commitment to restoring integrity and levelling the playing field,” the President said. “This is a commitment we intend to keep with all who want to conduct honest, fair business in the Philippines.” (Presidential News Desk)

resources. “We can be granted fishing access there,” Secretary Alcala said. The DA is exploring talks to with several Asia-Pacific, including Indian Ocean countries like Seychelles, to seek rights to catch marine species, that include tuna. The DA forecasts that the country’s fishery production will recover starting second half of 2013, as its conservation measures by imposing ‘closed fishing season’ in Zamboanga Peninsula and the Visayan Sea will result to more fish production and catch.

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DA family honors Dir. Jose V. Dayao

In great contrast to the low- regional staff in connivance with key profile that Dir. Jose V. the staff of Sec. Alcala had Dayao has maintained through planned to stage the tribute durall the years he had served the ing the MANCOM. While the Department of Agriculture, the regional personnel were busy tribute and send off party given preparing for the MANCOM they him by the DA family was gran- were also busy preparing the diose and attended by high pro- video presentation and rehearsfile personalities and top brass ing the dance and musical numof the DA officialdom. The tribute was held after dinner on January 30, while Secretary Alcala and DA top officials were gathered in Legaspi City for the first quarter in-house Ma na ge m e nt Conference (MANCOM) . It was Dir. Dayao’s wish that before he retires he be given the chance to host Secretary Alcala shares some jokes with Dir. ‘Joe,’ the MANCOM as his wife Violeta looks on. in Bicol. And his wish was granted. He was all agog as he bers for the fellowship cum triboversees all the preparation for ute. the MANCOM saying it would The occasion was held at the be his “last full show” before he posh Oriental Hotels which overexits quietly from government looks Legaspi City, Albay gulf service comes April. and a magnificent view of Mayon Unknown to Dir. Dayao, the volcano . Aside from Secretary

Director and Mrs. Dayao dance while the regional staff/personnel cheer on.

10

Dir. and Mrs. Dayao (seated) are flanked by Secretary Alcala (extreme left) and the DA region 5 officials and personnel.

Alcala also present were the He added that with all the supundersecretaries, assistant sec- port he has been getting from DA retaries, national program coor- he considers the agency not only dinators, executive directors of a partner but “a family.” DA attached agencies and all the In his response Dir. Dayao regional executive directors from said that it was his decision and the 14 regions. Albay governor volition that he chose the road and RDCC chair Joey Salceda, less travelled – to stay in the Catanduanes governor Cua, government sector instead of Legaspi City mayor Geraldine being in the private sector or tryRosal and former mayor and ing his luck abroad. Despite the currently city administrator Noel difficulties and frustrations he Rosal and Mrs. Violeta M. persevered, and plod on and as Dayao also graced the occasion. S ecretary A l c a l a awarded Dir. Dayao with a plaque of commendation for his dedicated service and his valuable contribution to the agriculture sector: attainUsec. ‘Berna’ Puyat and AMAD Director ‘Dax’ ment of rice Gazmin were declared the pair in ‘Best Retro Cosself-sufficiency tume,’ as part of the tribute to Dir. Dayao. At left is in rice from his successor, Dir. ‘Abe’ Bragas. 2009 to date; garnered 14 National Gawad Saka Awards; he nears the end of his journey, revivedg interest on Bicol’s flag- he says ‘It has been a road worth ship commodities specifically pili, travelling and fulfilling as it is queen, pineapple, abaca and co- replete with learnings and expeconut; mainatained the Interna- riences. tional Status of Bicol as FMDDir. Dayao is true blooded free; successful and efficient Bicolano and finished his docimplementation of several for- tor of veterinary medicine deeign assisted projects and ; gree at UP Diliman and has a mainstreaming the Disaster Risk CESO eligibility. He will turn 65 Reduction and Climate Change on July 22, 2013 but opted to adaptation methods in agriculretire earlier on April 1, this year. tural programs and projects. Governor Salceda com- Although soft-spoken and frail mended Dir. Dayao for his dedi- looking he is regarded highly by cation and for always being his colleagues for his honesty, available, accessible and ready simple-living and high-sense of even in times of calamity. “Pure integrity and prudence in spendwork” is what best defines Dir. ing government funds. (Emily B. Dayao according to Salceda. Bordado, DA 5 Info Div Chief)


Agri grows by ...

(from p 1)

ciations (IAs) with registered starter seed packs, and established more community seed banks, and implemented a regional seed buffer stocking system. The DA distributed one million kilograms (kg) of started registered seeds, at P80 per 2-kg pack, to 102,000 farmers’ groups and IAs, from September 2011 to September 2012. From these, they produced 26.5 million kg of certified seeds. Of the total, 6.5 million kg were distributed to farmers, 3.2 million kg were stored in community seed banks, and the balance of 16.8 million kg were traded in the commercial seed market. The farmer-recipients were asked to return 1.5 kg of good seeds for every kilo of certified seeds they borrowed from their community seed banks. Secretary Alcala said the other contributory factors were the provision of sufficient irrigation, and adequate fertilization. Central Luzon has remained the country’s rice granary, as it produced 3.22 million tons (MMT), 23% more than in 2011. The other major producers were: Cagayan Valley, 2.43 MMT; W. Visayas (2.29 MMT); Ilocos (1.74 MMT); Region 12 (1.27 MMT); Bicol (1.17 MMT); and Mimaropa (1.03 MMT). The country’s farmers also harvested a record 7.41 million

Secretary Alcala (3rd from left) shares with the media the performance of the country’s agriculture sector in 2012, which grew by 2.9%. Joining him are (from left) DA Assistant Secretary (A/Sec) Romeo Recide, Undersecretary Segfredo Serrano and A/Sec Salvador Salacup. MT of corn, 6.25% more than the 2011 level of 6.97 million MT. This was mainly due to an increase in harvested area, as farmers were encouraged to plant more because of high farmgate prices. Area harvested totaled 2.59 million hectares, 1.9% more than last year’s 2.54 million hectares. Average yield has also increased by 4.2% to 2.86 MT per hectare, from 2.74 MT per hectare in 2011. This was due to farmers’ continued use of quality seeds (hybrid and OPV), adequate irrigation, and fertilizer application. On a regional basis, the country’s major corn producers are Cagayan Valley, with 1.88 MMT, followed by Northern Mindanao (1.23 MMT), Region

12 (1.20 MMT), and ARMM (0.76 MMT). Other crops that performed well last year included tobacco (up by 7%), pineapple (6.7%), coconut (3.8%), and rubber (4%). The total value of various crops produced in 2012 amounted to P797.7 billion (B) at current prices, led by palay (P292 B), banana (P108 B), corn (P94 B), coconut (P88.6 B), and sugarcane (P42.3 B). The poultry subsector, which accounted for 14.3% of total farm output, grew by 4.5%, with a gross value of P167.1 B. Chicken and chicken eggs recorded output gains of 4.6% and 4.4%, respectively. Likewise, production of duck and duck eggs has increased by 2% and 5.5%, respectively.

NFA to ...

DA Chief swears in new NFA Administrator. Secretary

Alcala (left) swears into office 38-year old Orlan Agbin Calayag, who was recently appointed by President Benigno S. Aquino III as the new administrator of the DA’s National Food Authority (NFA). The DA chief has instructed Calayag to improve and expand the palay procurement services of NFA to serve and benefit as many farmers as possible, particularly in remote areas. Calayag is a business marketing graduate at Enverga University in Lucena City, and pursued MBA studies at De La Salle University, Manila. He previously headed an NGO (Progressive Community and Ecological Services Organization) that assists farmers, fisherfolk, and rural women and youth on livelihood, employment generation and environment protection. January 2013

(from p 5)

Agrarian Reform Office (MARO), indicating the hectarage planted to palay and yield per hectare and whether the area cultivated is irrigated or not. They can go to the nearest NFA provincial office or satellite buying station. Thereafter, qualified farmers are given a free NFA passbook. Farmers can go directly to Meanwhile, farmers’ cooperatives, associations or organizations need only submit their registration certificate issued by the Cooperative Development Authority (CDA), or Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), or any registration certificate from concerned government agencies. They should also submit a list of their farmer-members certified by the MAO or MARO. (NFA Public Affairs)

Livestock production inched up by 1.1%, with a gross value of P214.3B. Hog production grew by 1.7%, valued at P174.5B. The livestock subsector shared 16% to total farm output last year. The fisheries subsector slightly dipped by 0.04% compared to 2011, as municipal fishery production decreased by 3.9%. However, aquaculture harvest posted a 2.85% growth, while commercial fisheries increased by 0.23%. The fisheries subsector shared 18.2% to total farm output, and grossed P237.2 B at current prices. The DA through the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) has addressed the declining fishery production by enforcing timely ‘closed season’ in targeted fishing areas to allow the regeneration of fish species and marine resources. The DA-BFAR also encourages fishing communities to engage in aquasilviculture and rehabilitation of mangrove areas. Finally, the average farmgate prices of palay increased to P16.20 per kilo, up by 6.3%, and corn, up by 1% to P12.70 per kilo. Overall, other farm and fishery products have remained afford-

DA eyes ...

(from p 3) rated a Learning and Discovery Center (LeAD) for agriculture and fisheries, which serves as a showcase for value chain and farming systems, and innovations in organic farming. He urged farmer-leaders and agriculture industry stakeholders to adopt organic agriculture technologies to reduce production costs and make agricultural products more competitive in the international market.

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Bicol gets P1B for 2013 NIA projects With the Department of Agriculture pushing hard to attain rice sufficiency by the end of 2013, the National Irrigation Administration (NIA) has alloted P1.04 billion (B) in Bicol region. NIA Region 5 Director William P. Ragodon said the amount will be spent to construct new irrigation systems and repair old facilities. The bulk of the budget, amounting to P740 million, is alloted for an irrigation project in Prieto Diaz, Sorsogon, while P300 M will be used for a dam project in Minalabac, Camarines Sur. Ragodon said for the Minabalac proj ect, officially called Sibagat Small River Irrigation Project (SRIP), P60M is allotted this year and P240M will be released next year. He said the DA and NIA have targetted to produce about 1.3 million metric tons (MT) of palay this year. This is equivalent to roughly 843,335 MT of milled rice, which is about 20,000 MT more than the total regional requirement of 822,115 MT. The total regional rice requirement is computed based on the projected population of Bicol of some 6 million in 2013, and a per capita consumption of 120 kilograms (kg) every year. Ragodon said Bicol has currently 239,660 hectares (ha) of irrigable areas, of which 121,442 ha are currently served or irrigated. For his part, NIA Administrator Antonio S. Nangel said the agency has a total budget of P24.7B this year. This will be used to restore and rehabilitate damaged or silted canals, repair dams and other irrigation system infrastructure; and contruct new irrigation projects nationwide that will altogether serve new areas, totaling 150,000 hectares. He said the restoration and rehabilitation of old sytems, and construction of new ones--in combination with other factors such as providing farmers with quality seeds, farm machinery and equipment, and postharvest facilities--will help the country attain 100 percent sufficiency in rice, which is equivalent to at least 20 million metric tons. (Bicol Mail)

Secretary Alcala (left) urges top DA officials to ensure that sufficiency in rice, corn and major staples, is attained this year, during the DA’s 2013 1st quarter national management committee (ManCom) meeting, January 30-31, in Legazpi City. He said while there are still many who doubt that rice sufficiency could be attained, President Aquino himself is confident that it could be done. Thus is the big challenge to all DA family officials, especially so that 2013 has been declared by President Aquino as ‘National Year of Rice.’

DA-DAR launch ...

(from p 1)

Agriculture Secretary Proceso J. Alcala, who launched the “Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries-Agricultural Insurance Program (ARB-AIP),” along with DAR Undersecretary Jerry E. Pacturan, January 15, 2013, at the DA-BSWM in Quezon City. The insurance coverage will benefit 224,000 ARBs who till a combined area of 330,000 hectares of land and raise 30,700 livestock and poultry animals. Of the targeted beneficiaries, 99,580 are rice farmers tilling 178,801 hectares; 37,772 corn

farmers, 72,506 hectares; and 85,760 commercial crop farmers, 78,633 hectares. Each ARB, tilling up to hectares of farm, will be covered for two cropping seasons. To qualify, the ARBs must be participants of key DAR programs, like the Agrarian Reform Connectivity and Economic Support Service (ARCCESS), Agrarian Production Credit Program (APCP), Credit Assistance Program for Program Beneficiaries Development (CAP-PBD) and Microfinance Capacity Develop

Secretary Alcala joins hands with Agrarian Reform Undersecretary Jerry Pacturan and DA-Philippine Crop Insurance Corporation President Jovy Bernabe after signing the memorandum of agreement that will provide up P17-billion worth of crop insurance coverage for agrarian reform beneficiaries (ARBs) to be implemented over the next two cropping seasons. The insurance program — covering ARBs who will plant rice, corn, and high value crops, and raise poultry and livestock animals — is the first of its kind and the biggest group plan ever issued by the DA-PCIC.

ment in Agrarian Reform Areas. For the crop insurance program, the DAR will put up P1 billion to subsidize the premium. Of the amount, P533.78 million (M) is alloted for rice farmers, P385.82 M, for corn farmers, P79.09 M for high value crop farmers, and P1.31 M for livestock. For its part, the DA-PCIC will provide the insurance cover worth P17.07 billion (B). Of the sum, P4.94 B will be for rice, P2 B for corn, P2.35 B for commercial crops, and P13 M for livestock. The PCIC will also provide protection against physical accidents or death under its Accident and Dismemberment Security Scheme. Up to 155,360 policies will be issued, of which the premium cost amounting to P5.43 M will come from the interest income of the DAR-GPS fund. This will provide total coverage of up to P7.77 B. In case of crop losses due to typhoons and other natural calamities, the DA-PCIC will process and pay insurance claims within 20 days. Depending on the extent of crop damage and the amount of investments, farmers may claim from P39,000 to P52,000 per hectare for inbred and hybrid rice, respectively; P 28,000 and P40,000 for every hectare of open-pollinated and hybrid corn, respectively; and up to P50,000 for life and limb. (DA-PCIC)


AT Jan 2013 - edited