Masaganang Agrikultura, Maunlad na Ekonomiya!

AFCs’ role during pandemic, international crisis lauded in 7th NVD

Author: DA Press Office | 25 March 2022

Agriculture Secretary William Dar acknowledged the importance of the Agricultural and Fishery Councils (AFCs) during the 7th National Agriculture and Fisheries Volunteers’ Day (NVD) on March 24, 2022.

The agri chief thanked the AFCs and volunteer partners under the Department of Agriculture – Philippine Council for Agriculture and Fisheries (DA-PCAF) for their continued service to provide resolutions to the negative impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic and the Ukraine-Russia crisis on the country’s food production and supply.

The pandemic resulted in community lockdowns and restrictions in the movement of food throughout the country, while the ongoing tension between Russia and Ukraine has hampered the global supply chain and increased the prices of fertilizers and oil, to name a few.

Both situations have resulted in increased poverty and food insecurity among Filipinos, according to Dar.

With the Plant, Plant, Plant Program Part 2 set in motion to address these challenges and ensure food sovereignty, Secretary Dar called for the eager participation of the AFCs and volunteers.

“I would like to encourage and challenge our volunteer leaders and the members of the AFCs in the country to be one and united with us at the Department of Agriculture more than ever because of this new environment. We need to harness whatever is possible to sustain the production of food that we have been able to have properly done in these past three years,” he said.

The Secretary also lauded the efforts of the Maginhawa Community Pantry founder Ana Patricia Non, who was also in attendance as the event’s inspirational speaker, for her initiatives in ensuring food accessibility and evoking the people’s spirit of bayanihan during the pandemic.

Meanwhile, chairpersons of the National Banner Program Committees and Regional Agri-Fishery Councils also expressed their appreciation to the DA for giving them opportunities to take part in the planning, consultation, and implementation stages of its programs and projects.

The secretary, in response, pledged not only to strengthen the Department’s programs, but also to think of new, creative ways in addressing issues in Philippine agriculture.

Kahit tatlong buwan na lang ang natitira sa aking pagsisilbi, huwag ninyong isipin na by June 30 ay tapos na lahat ang ating trabaho kasi hindi riyan natatapos ang trabaho at pagtulong natin sa mga magsasaka, mangingisda, at mga nagnenegosyo sa agrikultura,” Dar said.

He also reminded everyone of DA’s vision and commitment to provide masaganang ani at mataas na kita to farmers and fisherfolk in the country.

The 7th NVD was organized by the DA-PCAF at the Hotel Stotsenberg in Clark Freeport Zone, Pampanga.The event also witnessed the oath-taking of newly-appointed AFC officials, as well as the awarding of outstanding AFCs. ### (Krystelle Ymari A. Vergara, DA-AFID)

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