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DA assures fertilizer subsidy for wet planting season

Author: DA Communications Group | 18 August 2021

THE Department of Agriculture (DA) is giving rice farmers assurance that its nationwide fertilizer program under its Rice Resiliency Project 2 (RRP2) will continue to sustain the country’s rice production during this wet planting season.

“We will not stop this subsidy as long as we have budget allotted for it,” Agriculture Undersecretary for Operations Ariel Cayanan said in Filipino during DA’s media briefing on Tuesday.

He said that Agriculture Secretary William Dar gave instructions that the fertilizer program shall continue via the DA’s implementation of voucher system, where eligible rice farmers present their vouchers to get free fertilizers.

Those who planted inbred seeds will be able to avail of two bags of fertilizers per hectare or P2,000 in the form of vouchers, and those who planted hybrid will be given three bags per hectare or P3,000 worth of vouchers.

According to Cayanan, qualified farmers to receive supply of free fertilizers from the DA are those who had previously been provided supply of free seeds and are registered on the agency’s Registry System for Basic Sectors in Agriculture (RSBSA), which contains basic information of legitimate farmers, farm laborers and fishers, who are eligible for “OneDA” programs and services such as those under the Rice Competitiveness Enhancement Fund (RCEF), insurance coverage, credit and financing, and farm and fishery inputs, among others.

Meanwhile, farmers who are not yet listed in the RSBSA may apply to their respective city and municipal agriculture office or DA regional field office, Cayanan said.

However, Dar earlier clarified that only those farmers in specified RCEF and non-RCEF areas who planted during the 2020-2021 dry season are qualified to receive free fertilizers.

Latest data from the DA showed that of the total P2.781 billion worth of available fertilizer subsidy, P2.599 billion were already been claimed by farmer-beneficiaries, repesenting a 93.45 percent of total funds. Regions with the highest rate of farmers who had successfully exchanged their vouchers to fertilizer subsidy include the Cagayan Valley, Western Visayas and Ilocos region.

Beneficiaries of the DA’s fertilizer program receive a subsidy for a supply of urea fertilizers, Cayanan said.

Following the recent report on the DA’s palay (unmilled rice) production hitting an all-time high of 8.8 million metric tons (MT) for the first semester of 2021, Cayanan also said that the agency is optimistic to achieve its target of 20.4 million MT for this year.

“Our dry season has just ended and you could see the impact and the effect. And if our weather conditions and typhoons will not be very destructive, we’ll be able to hit our target of 20.4 million MT,” he said. ### (Eireen Jairee Gomez, Manila Times)


Source: The Manila Times

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