Masaganang Agrikultura, Maunlad na Ekonomiya!

Dar’s legacy include rice/corn historic harvest, and “NO PILA” for rice

Author: DA Press Office | 27 June 2022

“I am one of the happiest Filipinos.”

This was the reaction of Agriculture Secretary William D. Dar following the announcement of President-elect Ferdinand R. Marcos, Jr. last week that he is personally designating himself as the temporary caretaker of Philippine agriculture.

Dar also expressed optimism as the new President is set to take over the agri-fishery portfolio starting at 12:01 PM, June 30, 2022.

“The OneDA family welcomes and support the decision of Marcos to supervise and oversee the development of the Philippine agriculture,” the Secretary said.

Dar believes that the food production sector will be in good hands following the President’s announcement that “agriculture is going to be a critical and fundamental part of our economic transformation.”

“We are positive that the President will give significant budget to DA to unlock the potential growth and development of agri sector,” he said.

According to Dar, Philippine agri-fishery has been neglected for 30 years and have remained unsupported  and under-mechanized.

“Sa pag-upo ng Pangulo bilang kalihim ng DA, makikita nya ang mga kakulangan at challenges, at marami syang magagawa para mabago ito,” Dar explained.

Speaking in front of farmers and fishers during his last visit in Ilocos Sur as DA chief, Dar highlighted the major accomplishments under his leadership.

For one, the agri chief noted there was never a rice supply shortage or rice was sufficient during his term, even if the country faced a series of unfortunate events including the global pandemic and the crisis due to the Ukraine-Russia dispute.

“Hindi po kailanman nagkaroon ng pila sa bigas, kahit pa man dumadaan tayo sa hindi normal na panahon,” Dar said.

The Secretary added that rice and corn reached record-level harvest at 19.96 million metric ton (MMT) and 8.1MMT, respectively.

“This is a historic accomplishment for Filipino farmers,” he said.

Lastly, Dar mentioned that as he steps down as DA chief, he will leave behind a 10-year directional plan through the National Agriculture and Fisheries Modernization and Industrialization Plan (NAFMIP).

“We will be leaving a solid foundation in support of a growing and developing Philippine agriculture in the next ten years. NAFMIP and the commodity and industry roadmaps we have produced will serve as a guide to improve and develop the country’s food production sector,” he said.

Dar hopes that the next administration will continue the current programs and projects of the Department guided by the One DA Reform Agenda.

“Consolidation, which is one of the key pillars towards rural development is part of our operational framework. It ensures economies of scale. And so I hope that farmers continue to group together and federate, to reap the maximum benefits of their hard work,” he said. ### (Adora D. Rodriguez, DA-AFID)

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