Cotabato City—The Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao will invest in long-term cropping of initially high value, fruit- bearing trees in boosting the region’s agricultural potentials.
Efforts to steer the region’s economy towards developing its fruits industry potentials took off with more than 300 mango farmers completing a four-month School-on-the Air training on Mango Production in a Maundy Monday graduation rites here.
The Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Agrarian Reform in BARMM has continued the early morning School-on-the Air radio program for farmers, started in the 1970s by Maguindanao agriculture information officers.
Dr. Mohammad Yacob, MAFAR minister said farmers from the towns of Datu Paglas, Midtimbang, Datu Odin Sinsuat, Datu Unsay Ampatuan, Guindulungan, Mamasapano, Northern Kabuntalan, Parang, Sultan Mastura, and Talayan successfully completed the course on mango flower induction technology, as well as on processing and marketing.
Yacob said his agency has the mandates among other things to help educate farmers, adding that: “Education is one of the keys to development. It is a way among many others to achieve our development goals.”
Dr. Kadiguia Rakman Abdullah, head of the MAFAR Regional Agriculture and Fishery Information Division, said over the years local farmers have reaped much from both traditional knowledge and modern technology discussed on radio to improve production performance in terms of quality and quantity.
“The farmers are very happy that, this time, they graduated and at the same time they received equipment and farm inputs for a better production level,” Abdullah said.
After their graduation, the mango farmers received farm inputs from MAFAR including 50 kilograms of mango inducer (calcium nitrate), one set of mango power spray, one pruning pole, and one set of sound system for podcast and radio.
The School-on-the Air program is aired from 6:00 to 7:00 in the morning on Sundays over DXMS-AM of the Notre Dame Broadcasting Corp. here.
Ali Kagi, one of the graduates, said he was profoundly grateful having learned a more from the program. “None can take knowledge from a good learner, and in my case, I will use the same knowledge to improve on mango production,” he said.