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Corn is the second most important crop in the Philippines. About 14 million Filipinos prefer white corn as their main staple and yellow corn accounts for about 50% of livestock mixed feeds. Some 600,000 farm households depend on corn as a major source of livelihood, in addition to transport services, traders, processors and agricultural input suppliers who directly benefit from corn production, processing, marketing and distribution.
Corn is also processed into high value products, such as cornstarch, corn syrups, corn oil, gluten and snack foods.
The Department of Agriculture’s Agri-Pinoy Corn Program aims to increase production of quality corn and also cassava for human consumption, feeds and industrial uses, as well as empower the farmers and increase their income, thereby improving their quality of life.
Overall strategy is to fast track the expansion of hybrid corn, cassava and other feed crops production to achieve food and feed self-sufficiency, enhance the competitiveness of the domestic livestock and poultry sectors through cheaper feed inputs as well as generate jobs in rural communities.
I. PRODUCTION SUPPORT SERVICES
Activities under this component are geared towards showcasing cost—reducing technologies which are efficient, effective, and economical towards global competitiveness and productivity.
A. White Corn Seed Production and Exchange Subsidy
Production and distribution of quality registered and certified open-pollinated variety (OPV) corn seeds under counterpart arrangement with LGUs to farmers practicing coconut-corn intercrop and those in the uplands whose main staple is white corn grits.
B. Support to Cassava Production
Provision of high-yielding varieties of cassava seed pieces in support to contract growing arrangement between farmers and processors/end-users and distribution of post-harvest facilities under counterpart-funding arrangement.
C. Organic-based agriculture program
The Program includes:
- Establishment of Mixing Plants and Organic Fertilizer Production Centers and promotion on the use of Bio-N and organic fertilizer in partnership with LGUs
- Techno demos and distribution of lime/dolomite to farmer- cooperatives to correct soil acidity in the farm clusters
- Soil fertility mapping and sampling undertaken by the DA Regional Field Units (DA-RFUs) and the Bureau of Soils and Water Management
- AgriKalikasan Program promoting sustainable agricultural practices.
D. Biological Control Program
Production and distribution of trichogramma cards and earwigs at cost by DA-RFUs, LGUs and non-government organizations for the control of corn borers and the conduct of pest and disease surveillance operations by DA-RFUs, LGUs and farmer-based surveillance team.
E. Pilot Farm Mechanization and Tractor Pool Program
Provision for farm tractors and implements (plow and other attachments, mechanical planters) under counterpart arrangements with LGUs, farmer-organizations and service providers.
F. Rehabilitation Assistance
Timely provision of production inputs, such as quality hybrid and OPV seeds and microbial innoculant, to assist farmers who are victims of natural calamities such as drought, typhoons, and floods to recover their losses.
G. National and Regional Field Monitoring
Program directorate shall conduct periodic monitoring on the activities at the field level and report to management relevant information for policy reforms or actions.
II. IRRIGATION DEVELOPMENT SERVICES
A. Small Farmer Irrigated Corn Production Program
Provision and construction of shallow tube wells (STWs) under counterpart arrangement with LGUs and farmer-organizations for pilot irrigated corn cluster wide projects.
III. POST HARVEST DEVELOPMENT SERVICES
A. Post Harvest Facilities Program
Installation of Post-harvest processing and Trading Centers, Village type driers, corn mill, hammer mill, hermetic cocoon, cassava chippers, granulators and graters and other post harvest equipment under counterpart arrangement with LGUs, farmer-organizations and service providers.
B. Aflatoxin Prevention Program
Establishment of an Aflatoxin Testing Laboratory and implementation of an aflatoxin prevention program among corn farmers in partnership with Bureau of Agricultural and Fisheries Product Standards (BAFPS), Philippine Center for Postharvest Development and Mechanization (PHilMech) and other stakeholders.
C. Technical Post Harvest Monitoring
Provision of technical assistance and evaluation and monitoring of LGU-based post harvest facilities by PHilMech.
IV. MARKETING DEVELOPMENT SERVICES
A. Corn-based Agribusiness Systems Technology Program Monitoring
It aims to generate private sector investments in corn through joint venture arrangement or CORPORATIVES with farmer-cooperatives in the farm clusters. Pilot COAST production schemes cover irrigated corn and corn-based farming systems, mechanized production, post harvest and processing activities and provide farm machinery under counterpart arrangement with LGUs, farmer cooperatives and service providers.
B. Market Development and Support
Facilitate market tie-ups and contract growing arrangement in the farm clusters and the conduct of trade and farm machinery fairs and exhibitions.
C. Corn Marketing and Price Information Network
Provide timely price and market information to farm clusters utilizing and enhancing the NFA-managed Electronic Corn Marketing System thru the joint efforts of DA-Agribusiness Marketing Assistance Service (AMAS), Information Technology Center for Agriculture and Fisheries (ITCAF) and National Food Authority (NFA).
V. EXTENSION SUPPORT, EDUCATION AND TRAINING SERVICES
DA continuously re-educate and establish mechanisms to capacitate Agriculture Extension Workers in communicating the latest technologies to farmer-clientele.
A. Farmer Education Program
The Farmer Education Program includes:
- Corn Specialist Training Courses (CSTs) through University of Southern Mindanao
- Training of Trainers’ (TOTs) Courses for LGU-based extension personnel, including curriculum development, through Agricultural Training Institute
- Corn Cluster/IPM Farmer Field Schools (FFSs)
- Entrepreneurial Training or Agribusiness Training Courses for cooperatives
- Post Harvest Technology Promotion, Extension and Training by the PHilMech and support to the Farmer Scientist Training Program (FSTP), Integrated Pest Management (IPM) and to the National Corn Farmers’ Organization.
B. Support to LGU Extension Workers
Provision of performance-based support to LGU-based extension, including traveling allowances.
C. Advocacy and Information Activities
Conduct of promotional and information advocacy activities such as the School-on-the-Air, production of TV and radio plugs and utilization of the quad media such as the print, TV, radio, and internet by the Agriculture and Fisheries Information Service (AFIS) in coordination with various DA Family agencies.
VI. RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT SERVICES
A. Institutional Corn Research and Development
Bureau of Agricultural Research extends fund support for institutional researches on integrated soil management, cost-reducing production, post harvest and processing technologies by DA Regional Field Units, agricultural schools, colleges and universities.
B. Farmers’ Participatory Technology Development Program
Bureau of Plant Industry administers grants for farmer-managed field researches to develop location-specific technologies and to address specific field problems.
VII. REGULATORY SERVICES
A. Corn Standards Development and Promotion Program
To develop and implement a classification and grading standards for the marketing of white and yellow corn grains thru the joint efforts of the BAFPS and NFA.
VII. INFORMATION SUPPORT SERVICES
A. Development and Implementation of Information Technology System
Operationalization and maintenance of IT systems in support of information and data requirements for program management and implementation.
B. MANAGEMENT INFORMATION SYSTEM
Development and operationalization of the Program’s management information system by the DA’s Bureau of Agricultural Statistics (BAS) and ITCAF.
VIII. POLICY FORMULATION AND ADVOCACY SERVICES
The Program Directorate shall continue to coordinate with corn farmers, livestock and poultry sector, feed-millers and other concerned stakeholders in the formulation and advocacy of policies conducive to agribusiness.
A. POLICY FORMULATION AND STATISTICS
Support to policy studies, specifically on the development of econometric and representative farm models to evaluate impacts of GATT-WTO and AFTA-related policies on domestic corn production and utilization, and farm incomes as well as support to development of corn statistics through nationwide surveys by BAS.
B. PROGRAM BENEFIT AND IMPACT EVALUATION
Annual program benefit and impact evaluation studies to be undertaken by BAS.
UPDATES ON DA CORN PROGRAM
CORN PROGRAM ACCOMPLISHMENTS AND TARGETS
- Attain self-sufficiency and/or surplus in corn by 2013
- Increase corn production from 6.97 million metric tons (MMT) in 2011 to 10.82 MMT in 2017
- Increase income of farmers by at least PhP8,000 to PhP10,000 per hectare
- Increase consumption of white corn and cassava of at least 1 kg per capita per year.
Program Thrusts (2013)
- Development of idle and new lands and coconut areas suitable for corn production thru farm mechanization
- Use of quality planting materials and cost-reducing technologies to improve yield
- Genetic conservation and utilization
- Establishment of postharvest facilities and equipment in major producing areas to reduce losses and improve quality of produce
- Deployment of small and bulk storage system with the active participation of the private sector
- Extension activities for farmers and extension workers
- Massive information campaign of white corn and cassava as food staple in support to the government’s Food Staple Sufficiency Program
- Strengthened coordination with industry players and other stakeholders
- Clustering approach in major producing areas
Program Targets (2013)
- Corn production for 2013 is targeted at 8.450 MMT with 5.683 MMT yellow corn and 2.767 MMT white corn.
- Sufficiency in corn will be achieved by 2013 with surplus of 234,000 MT.
- FY 2013 budget of Corn Program is PhP1.524 billion with an increase of 60.33% from FY 2012 budget.
- Conduct of Corn Quality Awards for 2013 to recognize the achievement of top performing LGUs with outstanding contribution to the corn industry.
Production Performance (2012)
- Corn production 2012 has reached 7.408 MMT in 2012, which is a 6.25% higher than that of 2011 (6.971 MMT). This is also the highest record in the history of corn production. By the end of 2013, the Corn Program is targeting a volume of 8.2 MMT that is 10.69% higher than the production in 21012.
- Area harvested to corn increased by 1.9% or 49,000 hectare (ha) from 2.545 million ha in 2011 to 2.594 million ha in 2012. Average yield for white is 1.66 MT/ha and for yellow is 4.09 MT/ha.
- Quezon has corn production of 36,033 MT: 15,445 MT for white and 20,588 MT for yellow. The total corn area of the province is 21,882 ha and average yield of 1.65 MT/ha.
Program Accomplishments (2012)
- Provided 178,566 bags of quality registered/certified Open-Pollinated Variety (OPV) corn and high-yielding cassava seed pieces for propagation of 40,346 ha in the different regions.
- Distributed 77 units of farm tractors through counterpart-funding arrangements to Local Government Units (LGUs), cooperatives or farmer associations to expand area for corn production.
- Provided 408 shallow tube wells in Ilocos, Central Luzon, CALABARZON and MIMAROPA regions to enable the planting of corn after palay.
- Established and completed ready for operation 42 village-type dryers as well as distributed 61 corn mills, 35 hammer mills, 16 mechanical corn shellers, 56 hermetic cocoons, 6 cassava chippers, 3 cassava graters with presser and 80 cassava granulators cum shredder.
- Conducted a total of 1,255 Farmer Education Program such as techno showcase, Training of Trainers, Farmers’ Field School, technical briefings, meetings and other trainings in corn and cassava to empower farmers and agricultural technicians to become more efficient and productive.
- The 8th Philippine National Corn Congress was held last September 25-28, 2012 in Davao City which was attended by more or less 1,000 corn farmers nationwide.
- The Corn Program budget for 2012 is PhP950.739 M which increased by 96.58% or to equivalent PhP467.097 M from FY 2011 budget of PhP483.642 M.