TABUK CITY, Kalinga – More than 15,000 rice farmers are set to receive certified rice seeds from the Department of Agriculture-PhilRice through its Rice Competitiveness Enhancement Fund (RCEF) program.
According to Michelle Lumas-i of the Office for City Agricultural Services (OfCAS), the identified beneficiaries who are registered under the Registry System for Basic Sectors in Agriculture (RSBSA) will receive two bags (20 kilos each) of certified rice seeds for every hectare of farm land.
Lumas-i explained that providing rice seeds is just one of four components of the RCEF under the PhilRice, with the other three being the provision of farm machinery and equipment under the PhilMech, credit assistance from the Land Bank of the Philippines (LBP) and Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP), and extension services from the Agricultural Training Institute (ATI) and Technical Assistance and Skills Development Authority (TESDA), all of which are funded by the Philippine government.
Since the distribution began in the last week of April 2022, around 7,500 bags of 20 kilogram pack certified inbred have been distributed, and the OFCAS hopes to finish the distribution before the scheduled release of water from the National Irrigation System, which is managed by the National Irrigation Administration (NIA).
Farmers and fishermen should enlist in the RSBSA to take advantage of the various programs and services offered by the national government through the DA and the city government.
Mayor Darwin Estrañero lauded the efforts of the OFCAS in profiling the data of local farmers, assisting them in their enrolment in the RSBSA, and leading the distribution of certified rice seeds, which is a big help to farmers, to ease their burden from the high cost of agricultural inputs.