The Department of Agriculture (DA) hopes to empower farmers and fisherfolk in Central Luzon through various interventions.
According to officials, this was in line with the administration’s thrust toward boosting the sector as one of the main drivers of the country’s push for economic growth.
During the Dagyaw 2022: Bayanihan sa New Normal na Lipunan hybrid forum, DA Regional Technical Director for Research, Regulatory and Integrated Laboratories Arthur Dayrit said the government continues to provide support to ensure enough food every day despite the many problems that the agriculture sector is experiencing.
“This is in line with our vision of a modernized and globally competitive agriculture for a food secure, resilient, and sustainable region,” he said in a Philippine Information Agency report.
Dayrit cited that among the major challenges in the sector is the rising cost of fuel, which also affects the price of farm inputs like fertilizers.
“It’s not just the transportation industry that uses a lot of fuel. Even the agri-fishery sector uses fuel for land preparation, for sailing, and other farm activities. It is a major problem for our ordinary farmers to keep up with the increasing fuel cost,” he said in the PIA report.
“The Philippines is frequented by more or less 20 typhoons a year, so we need to mitigate or adapt to the situation,” Dayrit added.
“Since we are frequented by calamities like typhoons, we are providing buffer stocking that in case there are strong typhoons, we have sources of seedlings that we can distribute to the affected farmers so that they can quickly recover,” he said.
He also said that the agency is now expanding agricultural infrastructure including the construction of farm-to-market roads that will give farmers and fishers in far-flung areas access to markets to enable them to reduce transportation cost and increase income.