ILAGAN CITY, Isabela: Gov. Rodito Albano 3rd said the provincial government here has allocated a P100-million fund to be used as palay (unmilled rice) price subsidy for the farmers’ rice produce in the province.
The fund, according to Albano, was transferred to the National Food Authority to help mitigate the impact of Republic Act (RA) 11203 or the “Rice Tariffication Law” (RTL).
“We are also giving our farmers other incentives on crop insurance, credit with no collateral and interest, social services and livelihood projects,” he said.
Albano added the past administration of the province led by now-Vice Gov. Faustino “Bojie” Dy 3rd had also been supporting farmers through subsidies in efforts to uplift the economic condition of farmers.
“Agriculture is the major industry of the people of Isabela where farming is highly mechanized and while keeping our title as top corn producer in the Philippines, our province is second in rice production,” he said.
Albano added that good yields in corn and rice in the province can be attributed to the fine weather conditions where no strong typhoons visited Isabela.
“Good harvest means that there were no floodings, which usually bring great damage to crops in the province,” he said.
Contributing as well to the province’s high productivity in agriculture is the presence of the Magat Dam, which irrigates most of the agricultural lands in Isabela.
Meanwhile, Agriculture Secretary William Dar, in his first official out-of-town visit to Cagayan Valley (Region 2) made special mention of the efforts of Isabela in easing the burdens being felt by farmers because of RTL.
Dar expressed appreciation for what the provincial government here has been doing to support the farmers by subsidizing the price of palay.
“We will be awarding top local government units that are implementing sound programs that directly benefit farmers affected by the low buying price of palay,” he said.
Dar was in Cauayan City in this province as guest of honor and speaker during the 4th National Organic Agriculture Scientific Conference held at Japi Hotel and Restaurant with 200 delegates.
During the conference, the Agriculture chief said there was a need to elevate partnership, researches, productivity and income of farmers for a progressive agriculture sector.
In order to improve the lives of farmers and fishers, he added, “We must forge stronger linkages, help each other to boost their harvest and income.”
Also present at the launching of various agricultural projects initiated by the Department of Agriculture Region 2, Dar mentioned other priority programs of the DA for the sector’s stakeholders.
Dar said these projects include modernization and industrialization of agriculture, promotion of exports, farm consolidation, roadmap and infrastructure development, higher budget and investments and legislative support.
He urged the conference participants from local government units, units, academe, government agencies and the private sector to become partners in these projects.
“It is high time for us to improve our researches in order not to waste time, efforts and other resources,” Dar said.