DAR, Searca team up for farmers service programs

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The Department of Agrarian Reform has signed a memorandum of agreement (MOA) with the Southeast Asian Regional Center for Graduate Study and Research in Agriculture (Searca) for the implementation of a support service delivery mechanism in Bulacan and Nueva Ecija.

Dubbed as the “Market-Oriented Agri-Technology and Agri-Extension Services under the Agrarian Reform Community Connectivity and Economic Support Services [Arccess],” the program aims to contribute to the overall goal of rural poverty reduction especially in agrarian reform areas.

DAR-RO 3 Regional Director Antonio Evangelista said that the project is consistent with Republic Act 9700, or the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program Extension with Reforms (Carper), which in turn is also aligned with the Philippine Development Plan to attain competitive and sustainable agriculture and fisheries.

One of the main objectives of the Arccess project is to improve the productivity of agrarian reform beneficiaries through the provision of strategic subsidies to ARB organizations (ARBO) in the form of agri-technology and agri-extension services.

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For Bulacan and Nueva Ecija, Searca will support 15 ARBOs in the preparation of their farm production plans, common service facility manual, crop production techno guides and conduct of capacity building program.

Searca’s assistance to DAR is in line with its mandate to build capacities of institutions working in agricultural and rural development in Southeast Asia.

The two agencies had worked together for many years in various capacity building and development programs aimed at strengthening the country’s agrarian reform communities.

In the 1990s, DAR and Searca had collaborated on five-year agro-industrial projects to develop self-reliant communities of agrarian reform beneficiaries in Rizal and South Cotabato.

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