PH agri seen to bounce back this year as campaign for sustainable production continues

Author: DA-AFID | 15 February 2019

Stressing the importance of inter-generational responsibility, Agriculture Secretary Manny F. Piñol said that “agriculture in not only about producing food for today, but ensuring that there will be enough food for the Filipinos of tomorrow.”

He emphasized the need for sustainable production to ensure that food supply will be available for the next generations.

Moving on from the bad performance last year, Piñol is positive that Philippine agriculture will bounce back this year.

For the first quarter, the agri chief sees positive development in rice, abaca, banana and even fisheries.

“We have already regained our status as the second biggest exporter of bananas,” he said.

The Secretary added that current production in fisheries which posted negative growth last year has reached .92%  as a result of the strict implementation of the closed fishing ban.

During the launch of the Malasakit Help Desk on February 14, Piñol shared words of encouragement to the DA family and reminded them to continue to contribute to the implementation of sustainable programs that ultimately seeks to feed the Filipinos.

“There are good and bad seasons for agriculture, it is the nature of this sector, but we are doing our job and we are in the right direction,” he said.

Piñol announced that the government is keen on building water systems to expand rice areas to another one million hectares and enable a more productive sector.

“We will be partnering with one of Israeli’s biggest agro-industrial company in building 6,200 units of solar-powered irrigation systems,” he said.

The units once completed will irrigate an estimated 500,000 hectares of rice farms and high value crops.

Piñol added that a group of bankers have also offered to finance other agri-fishery projects including the establishment of farm-to-market roads and postharvest facilities.

“As such, the Filipinos are now feeling the genuine concern of the government,” the chief noted.

“We have a lot of programs that intend to uplift the lives of the farmers and fishers, let us inform our clients about these through our grassroots relations officers who are knowledgeable and approachable,” he said.

The Malasakit Help Desk, which was launched simultaneously with the regional field units of the Department, is an integrated window that provides information and services of various bureaus, attached agencies and corporations including agri-fishery information and data, agri profiling and validation, credit facilities, crop insurance, scholarships, trainings and seminars, and employment. ###

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