LAOAG CITY: For the third time, the Department of Agriculture has again cited Ilocos Norte as one of the Agri-Pinoy Rice Achiever awardees in the country for rice sufficiency in 2015. According to Luz Tabora, provincial rice program coordinator, Ilocos Norte’s rice production increased by 2.16 percent in 2015 compared to 2014. She added that the province’s surplus production improved by 4.82 percent from 165.27 percent in 2014 to 173.23 percent in 2015. The provincial government will receive a cash prize worth P4 million which, Tabora said, will be used to fund agricultural programs to further help Ilocano farmers. IlocosNorte’s flagship agriculture program prioritizes climate change mitigation by promoting hybrid seeds, distributing agricultural equipment to farmers and improving agricultural infrastructure. The award will be received by Governor Imee Marcos during the Agri-Pinoy Achievers Awarding Ceremony on April 19-21 in Manila. Some 15 Ilocanos, led by Provincial Agriculturist Norma Lagmay and Dr. Tabora, will also be awarded for their significant contribution in attaining rice sufficiency in the province.