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Sunday, May 19, 2024

DA distributes financial aid, equipment to Bicol farmers

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The Department of Agriculture (DA) distributed more than P75.03 million worth of financial aid and farm equipment in Pili, Camarines Sur on Friday.

Included in the package is a P10.64-million financial aid under the Rice Farmers Financial Assistance that will benefit 2,128 rice farmers from the municipalities of Gainza, Mialor, Bombon, Camaligan, Magarao, Naga City and Pili.

Each rice farmer will receive P5,000 from the rice fund as temporary relief and compensation for the projected reduction in farm income due to the Rice Tariffication Law, which will end this year.

Rice farmers cultivating two hectares or less are qualified to receive direct cash assistance.

The DA and the Philippine Center for Postharvest Development and Mechanization also awarded 28 units of 4WD tractors worth P64.4 million as part of the Rice Competitiveness Enhancement Fund – Mechanization Component.

The farm equipment aims to enhance farmers’ productivity, which partly addresses the national government’s goal on food security.

The DA said it would provide other interventions like fertilizer discount vouchers and technical assistance.

“We aim to meet these objectives by expanding and improving our available agri-fishery areas for increased production. We will also mechanize and modernize agri-fishery production systems,” said Agriculture Secretary Francisco Tiu Laurel.

The DA reiterated plans to improve post-harvest systems and infrastructure and develop efficient logistics systems for input and production output.

“We will expand local and international market access as we push for digitalization. We will strengthen existing financial mechanisms that encourage investments and minimize risks,” Tiu Laurel said.

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