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๐‚๐š๐ง๐๐š๐›๐š ๐Ÿ๐š๐ซ๐ฆ๐ž๐ซ๐ฌ ๐ ๐ž๐ญ ๐š๐ข๐ ๐Ÿ๐ซ๐จ๐ฆ ๐ƒ๐€

Some 12,000 farmers in Candaba, Pampanga received assistance from the Department of Agriculture (DA). President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. led on Saturday the distribution of 1,755 bags of certified inbred seeds; 8,461 fertilizer discount vouchers; and 3,680 cash cards with P5,000 each as part of the Rice Farmer Financial Assistance Program.

๐‘ƒ๐‘’๐‘Ÿ๐‘๐‘–๐‘ฃ๐‘Ž๐‘™ ๐‘‡๐‘ข๐‘Ÿ๐‘™๐‘Ž (๐‘Ÿ๐‘–๐‘”โ„Ž๐‘ก๐‘š๐‘œ๐‘ ๐‘ก), ๐‘š๐‘’๐‘š๐‘๐‘’๐‘Ÿ ๐‘œ๐‘“ ๐‘†๐‘ก๐‘Ž. ๐ด๐‘›๐‘Ž ๐ด๐‘”๐‘Ÿ๐‘–๐‘๐‘ข๐‘™๐‘ก๐‘ข๐‘Ÿ๐‘Ž๐‘™ ๐‘€๐‘ข๐‘™๐‘ก๐‘–-๐‘ƒ๐‘ข๐‘Ÿ๐‘๐‘œ๐‘ ๐‘’ ๐ถ๐‘œ๐‘œ๐‘๐‘’๐‘Ÿ๐‘Ž๐‘ก๐‘–๐‘ฃ๐‘’, ๐‘Ÿ๐‘’๐‘๐‘’๐‘–๐‘ฃ๐‘’๐‘  ๐‘Ž ๐‘โ„Ž๐‘’๐‘๐‘˜ ๐‘Ž๐‘š๐‘œ๐‘ข๐‘›๐‘ก๐‘–๐‘›๐‘” ๐‘ก๐‘œ ๐‘ƒ5.5 ๐‘š๐‘–๐‘™๐‘™๐‘–๐‘œ๐‘› ๐‘ข๐‘›๐‘‘๐‘’๐‘Ÿ ๐‘กโ„Ž๐‘’ ๐ผ๐‘›๐‘ก๐‘’๐‘”๐‘Ÿ๐‘Ž๐‘ก๐‘’๐‘‘ ๐‘๐‘Ž๐‘ก๐‘–๐‘œ๐‘›๐‘Ž๐‘™ ๐‘†๐‘ค๐‘–๐‘›๐‘’ ๐‘ƒ๐‘Ÿ๐‘œ๐‘‘๐‘ข๐‘๐‘ก๐‘–๐‘œ๐‘› ๐ผ๐‘›๐‘–๐‘ก๐‘–๐‘Ž๐‘ก๐‘–๐‘ฃ๐‘’๐‘  ๐‘“๐‘œ๐‘Ÿ ๐‘…๐‘’๐‘๐‘œ๐‘ฃ๐‘’๐‘Ÿ๐‘ฆ ๐ธ๐‘ฅ๐‘๐‘Ž๐‘›๐‘ ๐‘–๐‘œ๐‘› ๐‘ƒ๐‘Ÿ๐‘œ๐‘”๐‘Ÿ๐‘Ž๐‘š ๐‘œ๐‘“ ๐‘กโ„Ž๐‘’ ๐ท๐‘’๐‘๐‘Ž๐‘Ÿ๐‘ก๐‘š๐‘’๐‘›๐‘ก ๐‘œ๐‘“ ๐ด๐‘”๐‘Ÿ๐‘–๐‘๐‘ข๐‘™๐‘ก๐‘ข๐‘Ÿ๐‘’. (PCO)

DA also awarded a warehouse with mechanical dryer to Candaba Marketing Cooperative; and P5.5 million each to Pampanga Seed Growers Multi-Purpose Cooperative, and Sta. Ana Agricultural Multi-Purpose Cooperative as part of the Integrated National Swine Production Initiatives for Recovery Expansion Program.

The agency likewise provided P3 million to Vizal Sto. Niรฑo Rice and Livestock Farmers Association, and P1 million to Pansinao Parents Agricultural Association under the Agribusiness and Marketing Assistance Intervention program.

Hog raiser Percival Turla thanked DA for the assistance which will help them cope up with the losses brought by the African Swine Fever.

โ€œNapakahirap po, syempre ang puhunan po namin nanggaling lang sa maliit naming ipon. Ang iniisip namin e โ€˜pag ani ay kikita, e biglang nag zero balance kami. Buti na lang may programa ng DA na binayaran po yun. [It is very difficult, of course our capital was from the small amount of money that we saved up. We were expecting that we would earn when we harvested, but we ended up having zero balance. Thankfully, the DA has a program where they paid us],โ€ he said.

๐ด๐‘๐‘œ๐‘ข๐‘ก 12,000 ๐‘“๐‘Ž๐‘Ÿ๐‘š๐‘’๐‘Ÿ๐‘  ๐‘–๐‘› ๐ถ๐‘Ž๐‘›๐‘‘๐‘Ž๐‘๐‘Ž ๐‘ก๐‘œ๐‘ค๐‘› ๐‘–๐‘› ๐‘ƒ๐‘Ž๐‘š๐‘๐‘Ž๐‘›๐‘”๐‘Ž ๐‘Ÿ๐‘’๐‘๐‘’๐‘–๐‘ฃ๐‘’ ๐‘ฃ๐‘Ž๐‘Ÿ๐‘–๐‘œ๐‘ข๐‘  ๐‘Ž๐‘ ๐‘ ๐‘–๐‘ ๐‘ก๐‘Ž๐‘›๐‘๐‘’ ๐‘“๐‘Ÿ๐‘œ๐‘š ๐‘กโ„Ž๐‘’ ๐ท๐‘’๐‘๐‘Ž๐‘Ÿ๐‘ก๐‘š๐‘’๐‘›๐‘ก ๐‘œ๐‘“ ๐ด๐‘”๐‘Ÿ๐‘–๐‘๐‘ข๐‘™๐‘ก๐‘ข๐‘Ÿ๐‘’ (PCO)

Together with the members of Sta. Ana Agricultural Multi-Purpose Cooperative, Turla pledged that he will use the assistance well, and strive to improve it so that all of them will benefit.

โ€œNagbubuhat po sa kaibuturan ng aking puso, sa ngalan ng aming cooperative, sana po ipagpatuloy po niya ang kanyang suporta sa aming mga maliliit na magsasaka, hindi lamang sa mga babuyan, kundi sa lahat ng antas ng agrikultura, lalung-lalo na sa palay. [From the bottom of my heart, in behalf of our cooperative, we wish that he [PBBM] will continue his support to us small farmers, not only in piggeries, but also in all forms of agriculture, especially rice],โ€ he added.

During the awarding ceremony, Mayor Rene Maglanque emphasized that the various assistance provided to Candabeรฑo farmers will greatly help them improve their livelihood amid challenges of climate change.

โ€œBilang isang munisipalidad na ang pangunahing kabuhayan ay pagsasaka, ang aming bayan ay nakakapag-ani ng halos 2 milyong sako ng palay o katumbas ng 91 metric tons tuwing dry seasonโ€ฆMasaya po ang mga magsasaka ng buong Pampanga at sa bayan ng Candaba sa inyong pagdating kahit nasa sulok ang barangay Mandili, sa pagbibigay ng inyong panahon at atensyon sa kasalukuyang estado ng agrikultura sa aming bayan.[As a municipality whose major source of livelihood is farming, our town can harvest about two million sacks of rice equivalent to 91 metric tons during the dry seasonโ€ฆ The farmers in the whole Pampanga and in the town of Candaba are happy with your arrival, even though Mandili is a far area, for giving us your time and attention in the current state of agriculture in our town],โ€ he pressed.

Data from Philippine Rice Research Institute (PhilRice) revealed that Candaba was the highest rice producer in Pampanga in 2022 at 122,816 metric tons.

Meanwhile, Marcos pledged that the government will beef up its support to farmers to ensure the development of the Philippinesโ€™ agriculture sector.

โ€œAng ating pagtutulungan na mapaunlad ang ating sektor ng agrikultura ay isa lamang sa mga pangunahing hakbang tungo sa pagbuo ng isang Bagong Pilipinas kung saan walang nagugutom at ang lahat ng masigabong kumikilos para sa mas masaganang kinabukasan. [Our cooperation to improve the agriculture sector is one of the major steps towards the formation of Bagong Pilipinas where no one will be hungry and everyone will resoundingly work for a more abundant future],โ€ he stated.

The country registered a record-high production volume of 20.06 million metric tons of palay in 2023. This is 1.5 percent higher than the 19.76 million metric tons produced in 2022.

To continue the gains amid the looming El Niรฑo, Marcos underscored that the administration laid out several programs to support the affected farmers.

โ€œIlan sa mga hakbang na ginagawa natin ngayon ay ang paglikha ng mga binhing umaayon sa paba-bagong klima, gayun din ang pagsasagawa ng climate risk assessments para sa mga nasalantang pamayanan. [One of the steps that we are doing now is the production of seeds which can vie with the changing climate, and the conduct of climate risk assessments for affected communities],โ€ he added.

He will also push for infrastructure development, information dissemination, and strengthen the water irrigation system through the Philippine Solar Irrigation Project and small-scale irrigation projects.

The Chief Executive furthered that his administration allotted P31 billion under the National Rice Program to intensify the production support, extension services, research and development, and irrigation network services.

The government will also utilize the Rice Competitiveness Enhancement Fund to strengthen the agriculture sector and to assist farmers while a huge chunk of the fund will be used for the distribution of farming equipment.

โ€œSa mga ating mga minamahal na magsasaka, ang inyong dedikasyon, sakripisyo, at sipag ay tunay na nagsilbing inspirasyon sa ating lahat.. Ang inyong mga kamay na masigasig na nagbubungkal ng lupang inyong sinasaka ang siyang nagbibigay ng buhay at sigla sa ating sambayanan.[To our beloved farmers, your dedication, sacrifices, and hard work truly serve as inspiration to everyoneโ€ฆ Your hands which zealously plows the soil are what give life and enthusiasm to our society],โ€ he added.

Farmers will also be introduced to modern farming through PhilRice, Philippine Center for Postharvest Development and Mechanization, Agricultural Training Institute, and Technical Education and Skills Development Authority. (CLJD/JLDC-PIA 3)

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