Masaganang Agrikultura, Maunlad na Ekonomiya!

Agri chief calls for unified efforts from ‘OneDA’ family

Author: DA Press Office | 29 March 2022

“In unity, there is strength!”

This was the message of Agriculture Secretary William Dar to the members of the  “OneDA Family” attending the 2022 first quarter national management committee meeting, in Iloilo, which started today, March 28, and ends on April 1.

The agri chief urged the top management of the OneDA to come together to overcome the crisis due to the ongoing pandemic and global challenge posed by the conflict between Russia and Ukraine.

In his message, Dar reiterated his directives toward the attainment of the goals of the OneDA Reform Agenda.

“We have to unify our ideas and purposes, and aim higher. Turn challenges into opportunities,” he said.

He also underscored the importance of engaging the local government units in the implementation of initiatives to attain the country’s food security goals and jumpstart agri-fishery development amid the pandemic and the Ukraine crisis.

He specifically noted the critical role of the local government units (LGUs) in rice buffer stocking, including palay procurement, rice milling and storage, and providing their constituents with reasonably-priced quality rice.

“To start with, we will enjoin the top 20 rice-producing provinces to be our ally in this major initiative so we can increase the government’s rice stocks to 30 days, from the current measly eight to nine days’  supply,” he said.

“By doing so, there is a bigger opportunity for rice farmers to produce and earn more, and give traders fair competition,” he said,  adding that farmers would enjoy a good price for their palay.

He also reminded everyone to vigorously promote among farmers the inbred and hybrid rice package of technologies, as well as increase the production of quality seeds and seedlings, thus enabling them to sustainably increase their production and provide the country adequate supply of rice.

“We must always be ready to mitigate and distribute seeds to fast track the revival and rehabilitation efforts for agricultural development amid the challenging times,” he said, stressing the importance of balanced fertilization in ensuring optimum rice production.

He said the package of technology should follow a general set of guidelines, even if it is location-specific. As such, he urged the DA banner program directors to harness locally-available technologies to sustain optimum productivity, assuring farmers of increased incomes.

He also called for an enhanced organic agriculture system to intensify production and yield of all crops nationwide.

Further, he shared that the Philippines and the People’s Republic of China are in the middle of bilateral negotiations for the procurement of fertilizers, including biofertilizers and biostimulants.

“We have been talking with Ambassador Huang Xilian on the country’s ongoing request to buy fertilizers from China, and we are optimistic about the positive result of our discussions regarding the potential trade,” he said. ### (Adora Rodriguez, DA-AFID)

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