Beyond Buzzwords: Transforming Philippine Agriculture!

DA rolls out RFFA 2, Fuel Discount Program in Bataan

Author: DA Communications Group | 25 May 2022

The Department of Agriculture (DA) officially launched the Rice Competitiveness Enhancement Fund – Rice Farmers Financial Assistance (RCEF-RFFA) Program’s second wave and the Fuel Discount Voucher Program in Bataan, benefitting more than 6,000 farmers and fishers in the province.

The ceremonial launching took place at Dinalupihan Civic Center, Bataan on May 24, 2022 in time with the National Farmers’ and Fisherfolk’s Month.

Under the RFFA Program, Bataan was allotted P33.66 M budget, with 6,732 rice farmers receiving P5,000 cash assistance each.

The DA Regional Field Office (RFO) III also confirmed that as of date, 26 corn farmers and fisherfolk in the province are confirmed recipients of P3,000 worth of fuel discount vouchers each.

A total of 26 farmer cooperatives and associations (FCA) in Bataan will also receive farm machineries and other technologies amounting to P32.7 M from the Philippine Center for Postharvest Development and Mechanization (PhilMech) under the RCEF’s Mechanization component.

In his keynote speech, Agriculture Secretary William D. Dar reiterated his call for unity among all stakeholders of the Philippine agriculture sector.

“May diversity sa sektor ng agrikultura. And when there is diversity, there is unity in agriculture. Dapat sama-sama at tulong-tulong tayo. Kung masipag na tayo noon, mas magsipag pa tayo ngayon dahil may nagbabadyang kagutuman,” he expressed, referring to the looming global food crisis due to the impacts of the continuing COVID-19 pandemic and the war in Ukraine.

In response to the global concern, the Secretary highlighted the DA’s action plan, under the Plant, Plant, Plant Program Part 2, composed of the provision of fertilizer subsidies and the promotion of balanced fertilization strategy, urban and peri-urban agriculture, the enhancement of local feeds production, strengthening of the aquaculture and fishery sectors, and the mobilization of food through the KADIWA ni Ani at Kita.

“Ang kampanya natin laban sa kagutuman at kahirapan ay hindi tumitigil,” the DA chief assured.

During the launch, Bataan Governor Albert Raymond Garcia and Dinalupihan Mayor Maria Angela Garcia shared the local government’s initiatives for the agri-fishery sector in the province, namely:

  • Precision farming project through public-private partnership with an Israeli corporation. As of date 10 marginalized farms were introduced to drip irrigation system to solve water shortage during the dry season;
  • Establishment of a postharvest center to ensure proper processing, packaging, and distribution of local farmers’ harvests;
  • Township project, which will provide housing for marginalized fisherfolk in Bataan Peninsula and yacht club for their boats; and
  • Proposed fishing cooperatives and provision of maintenance services for fishing vessels in the province.

The ceremonial launch in Bataan was also attended by DA Undersecretary for Operations Ariel Cayanan, DA Assistant Secretary for Operations Arnel de Mesa, DA Assistant Secretary for Strategic Communications and Spokesperson Noel Reyes, DA Regional Field Office III Director Crispulo Bautista, Jr., PhilMech Director Dionisio Alvindia, Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Region III Director Wilfredo Cruz, and Development Bank of the Philippines Senior Assistant Vice President Francis Rivera. ### (Krystelle Ymari A. Vergara, DA-AFID)

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