aggie trends march 2011

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Vol. XXVI No. 3A monthly publication of the Department of Agriculture

TRANSCRIPT

Vol. XXVI No. 3

A monthly publication of the Department of Agriculture

March 2011

DA Chief sees bright agri prospectsThe country is on its way to attaining rice self-sufficiency and food security. Thus, was the optimistic declaration of Agriculture Secretary Proceso J. Alcala during the agencys 2012 internal budget hearing and planning workshop, held March 1-4, 2011, at Clark, Pampanga. We expect a good summer harvest, and more importantly we are no longer the worlds biggest importer, he said during the workshop, attended by more than 100 DA family top officials. He said the country will be importing less than one million metric (MT) tons (or 860,000 MT) versus more than two million tons in 2010. He added palay production for the first semester may reach more than 7.6 million tons, as estimated by the DAs Bureau of Agricultural Statistics (BAS). The projected production is 15% more than last years harvest of 6.6 million tons for the same sixmonth period. The DA-BAS said the increase could be attributed to the expansion in harvest area by 9.6% (equivalent to 174,300 hectares) from the 1.82 million hectares in(Pls turn to p2)

DA allots P50M for coffee sectorThe Department of Agriculture will earmark an initial P50 million to support the countrys coffee sector and may double it depending on favorable investor response.(Pls turn to p11)

Agriculture Secretary Proceso J. Alcala (left) and Trade and Industry Secretary Gregory Domingo (3rd from right) appreciate coconut coir geo-textile nets woven by lady workers at Pontmain Resources Inc. (PRI), in Sta. Cruz, Davao City. The coco coir geo-nets, used extensively as erosion control material, have huge export potential, estimated at $225 million annually. Photo also shows Phil. Coconut Administrator Euclides Forbes (2nd from right) and PRI manager Paul Gaite (right).

Turn coco fiber, peat into goldCoconut fiber and peat or dust could be turned into gold. Agriculture Secretary Proceso J. Alcala said processing coconut fiber and peat into geo-textiles and organic fertilizer or soil conditioner, respectively, could earn for the country millions of dollars in exports, and provide additional income and livelihood to hundreds of thousands of small coconut farmers and their families in the countryside. The DAs Philippine Coconut Authority (PCA) estimates that the country produces some 12 billion coconuts annually. Collecting merely one-half or six billion coconut husks, and processing these into coco geotextiles and organic fertilizers, the country could generate at least $225 million annually, said Sec. Alcala during the recent 1st Coconut Coir Summit in Davao City. PCA Administrator Euclides G. Forbes revealed geo-textiles or cocomats serve as erosion control material that are laid on mountain slopes, river banks and dam embankments. Coconut fibers are also transformed into twine or yarn, while fine coco fibers are used in making beds or mattresses. Coconut peat or dust is used as organic fertilizer, soil conditioner, or animal beddings. For every kilo of coconut husk,(Pls turn to p10)

Rep. Pacquiao asks rice-eating Filipinos:

Try corn, other staplesProceso Alcala to make rice production more efficient. A film crew contracted by the DA went to Cooyeesan Hotel Plaza in Baguio City, where the boxer has been training for a match with American boxer Shane Mosley in May, to film Pacquiao endorsing the food project. Pacquiao, who represents Sarangani in the House of Representatives, said he has been eating corn since he was 7 years old. Corn is a staple in the Visayas and Mindanao, alongside rice. DA Assistant Secretary Dennis Araullo said the government may need to increase the production of other crops to supplement rice as a staple food in order to meet food(Pls turn to p3)

Phl to be declared FMD-free soonAgriculture Secretary Proceso J. Alcala is optimistic that the Philippines will soon be declared as entirely free from the dreaded foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) by the World Organization for Animal Health or Office International des Epizooties (OIE). With the declarationto be formalized in May during the 79th General Session of the World Assembly of OIE Delegates in Francethe country will gain a foothold in the global meat market, particularly exports of pork and poultry meat products, Sec. Alcala said. One opportunity is export of Philippine pork products to South(Pls turn to p11)

Boxing champion Manny Pacquiao is the new face of the Department of Agriculture. Specifically, his role is to convince rice-eating Filipinos to try other staples instead. The DA has embarked on a campaign to urge Filipinos to try other food, in light of a reform program being undertaken by Agriculture Secretary

EditorialMaliit at malakiNakikita natin na nasa magkabilang dulo ang buhay dito sa atin. Halimbawa, ang mga mayayaman ay sobrang yaman. Kung mamili, kala mo pinupulot lang ang pera. Samantalang ang mahirap ay sobra rin sa hirap. Ganito rin ang naoobserbahan natin sa panahon. May mga araw na sobrang init, mayroon namang sobrang lamig. Ang pagiging nasa magkabilang dulo ng mga bagay-bagay ay kadalasang nakikita na magkasalungat. Pero iba ang nakikita natin ngayon dito sa agrikultura. Sa halip na magkasalungat, ang malaki at maliit ay nagtutulungan o complementary at nagbibigay ng positibong resulta. Una pa rin sa listahan ang pagkukumpuni ng irrigation facilities at pagtatatag ng post-harvest facilities. Ito ang nagbibigay ng long-term na benepisyo sa magsasaka. Kasabay nito, mayroon ding mga initiatives ang DA na masasabing maliliit na hakbang para matupad ang itinakdang mga layon. Kapansin-pasin na dito ang dami ng bigas na nakatakdang iangkat ngayong taon, na humigitkumulang ay 1/3 lang ng inangkat noong isang taon. Pinapalakas din ang pakikipagtulungan ng DA sa mga lokal na opisyal. Nakikipag-ugnayan tayo sa kanila para makahingi ng tulong gaya ng financial assistance sa mga farm inputs, na makakatulong para magkaroon ng third cropping. Isa pa ang pakikipagkasundo ng DA sa Social Welfare department, na kung saan bibilhin nito ang mga sobrang produkto sa mga trading post. Ipinagmamalaki din na mayroon na tayong 60 percent na accomplishment sa Mindanao Rural Development Program. Sa katunayan, kung maipapalabas ang hinihiling nila na panibagong pondo, matutuloy na ang Phase 3 ng MRDP. Ang masasabing malaking ipinag-iba ng pamamalakad ni Sec. Alcala ay ang mga pamamaraang kanyang ginagamit at ang paganticipate sa mga problema. Nakita natin ito nang naiwasan ang pagtaas ng presyo ng gulay kahit pa umabot na sa nagyeyelong temperatura sa mga taniman ng gulay sa Benguet. Maagap na nakapagtanim ang mga taga Region 2 at Region 4, dahilan para mapunan ng demand sa Metro Manila at karatig-bayan nito. Bukod dito, ipinagpapatuloy din ang mga epektibong stratehiya na ginawa ng dating administrasyon. Halimbawa nito ang paglalagay at tuluy-tuloy na pagsasaayos ng mariculture parks. Malaking tulong din sa livestock industry ang inaasahang pagdeklara ng buong bansa bilang foot and mouth disease free, without vaccination. Malaking tulong ito sa hangad na pag-export ng produktong karne. Ang mga hakbang na ito at ang inaasahan pang mas maayos na pamamalakad, sa tulong na rin ng mga road maps, ang makapagsusulong pa sa agrikultura ng bansa. Natutukoy na ang direksyon at pati na ang mga konkretong mga programa, kayat asahan natin ang patuloy na pagtaas ng produksyon, kasabay ng pag-angat ng kita ng magsasaka. Ang maliliit na hakbang na ito ang simula sa pagkamit natin sa mga malalaking layon, para sa ikauunlad ng magsasaka at mangingisda.

Sec. Alcala (left) addresses top DA officials during their 2012 internal budget hearing and planning workshop in Pampanga. With him are DA undersecretaries Antonio Fleta (administration and finance) and Joel Rudinas (field operations).

DA chief sees ...

(from p1)

2010, and increase in average palay harvest per hectare to 3.8 tons (roughly 76 cavans of 50 kilos each) from last years 3.6 tons. Sec. Alcala said palay production will further increase for the entire year, barring strong typhoons, with the completion of irrigation system repairs, establishment of more post harvest facilities, and construction of farmto-market roads particularly in Mindanao. He said these and other DA interventions in partnership with local government units and farmers groups will all contribute to propping up palay production to a target year-end volume of 17.46 million tons. During the workshop he also took the opportunity to issue initial marching orders to all DA officials, highlighting President Aquinos agriculture agenda this year and in 2012, and the AgriPinoy strategic framework that will serve as guide when crafting and implementing DA programs and services from 2011 to 2016.

The DA 2012 internal budget hearing and planning workshop was attended by all undersecretaries and assistant secretaries, and respective directors and heads of 16 regional offices, eight bureaus, 26 attached agencies and corporations, a dozen foreign-assisted programs and projects, DAOSEC services, and commodity banner programs. I urge everyone to strengthen Philippine agriculture via the Agri-Pinoy strategic framework, and prioritize major programs on food staples self-sufficiency, mariculture development, livestock expansion, genetic improvement, disease control, high-value crops development, and strategic trading posts/market linking, the DA chief said. Sama-sama nating baguhin ang kabuhayan ng ating mga kababayan, at nang manumbalik ang kanilang tiwala sa pamahalaan (Together, lets improve the livelihood of our countrymen, so we can win back their trust), Sec. Alcala concluded.

is published monthly by the Department of Agriculture Information Service, Elliptical Road, Diliman, Quezon City. Tel. nos. 9288762 loc 2148, 2150, 2155, 2156 or 2184; 9204080 or tel/fax 9280588. This issue