Eleven agrarian reform beneficiaries organizations (ARBOs) earned almost P1 million in vegetable sales and sustained food deliveries to the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP).
This partnership is a “win-win situation” for both parties as the vegetables produced in the farms are fresh and nutritious, and the farmers no longer need to enlist the services of middlemen to market their products, thus increasing their incomes, Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) Assistant Regional Director H. Roldan Ali said a statement on Tuesday.
For his part, BJMP-General Santos City male dorm jail warden Superintendent Metz Milton Placencia said that through this agreement, their vegetable supplies were always delivered fresh and on time.
"In this time of the pandemic, it is vital that nutritious foods are provided to persons deprived of liberty in order to ensure their health and welfare while they are under our jurisdiction," he said.
This project is under the Enhanced Partnership Against Hunger and Poverty (EPAHP) program which targets different government agencies to provide help to DAR-assisted ARBOs and farmer-beneficiaries through direct market linkages and access to programs and funding.
Meanwhile, Leonard dela Cruz from the Alkikan Vegetable Growers' Association from Malungon, Sarangani thanked the DAR for helping them find regular means of income and for sustaining a good partnership with agencies like the BJMP and the National Nutrition Council.
New research center in the north
Meanwhile, the Ilocos Sur Polytechnic State College (ISPSC) established a new research center that would serve as a hub for the promotion of technologies generated from agri-fishery research and development and breakthrough products and services in the field of agricultural sciences.
Funded by the Department of Agriculture (DA)-Bureau of Agricultural Research, the facility was named after Agriculture Secretary William Dar himself, who personally led the inauguration of the Dr. William D. Dar Research Innovation Center on Sunday.
“Dito sa ating bansa, kakaunti sa atin ang nakakaintindi ng importansiya ng pananaliksik (In our country, only a few understand the importance of research),” he said, stressing the value of research innovation in the country’s plight for achieving high productivity, increasing incomes, and ensuring food security.
“Take the case of rice research. It took 40 years before we can arrive at four metric tons per hectare na ani (of harvest). Forty years of dedicated research. So kung walang research yan, hindi tataas ang ani natin sa palay (if there’s no research, our rice yield would not increase),” he added.
Dar said that ensuring that food production is adequate, and that food is affordable, nutritious, and accessible are their top priorities.
“And research innovation has a lot to do with that,” he said. — DVM, GMA News