Source : Daily Tribune (https://tribune.net.ph/)
Article by : Jun Yap
Article Date : November 29, 2020
The Seed Program under the Rice Competitiveness Enhancement Fund (RCEF) started benefitting more than 100,000 rice farmers in Region 2 and Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR) who were affected by agricultural damage brought about by the recent typhoons.
Andres L. de la Cruz Jr., RCEF coordinator in Isabela, said that seed delivery and distribution in Region 2 and CAR has resumed to immediately supply the RCEF areas with more than 120,000 bags of seeds.
Municipalities and cities, especially in the provinces of Cagayan and Isabela, which were heavily damaged due to flooding, are prioritized.
The Department of Agriculture-Philippine Rice Research Institute (DA-PhilRice) is currently distributing high-quality inbred seeds in the six municipalities in Cagayan; 21 in Isabela; and seven in Ifugao.
DA recently reported that “Ulysses,” the deadliest typhoon that hit the country so far, brought almost P4 billion worth of damage.
Farmers in the Cagayan Valley and the Cordilleras were among the more than 100,000 affected farmers.
Before the typhoon “Ulysses” hits the regions, RCEF seed deliveries in Isabela were fast tracked and seeds were secured in warehouses to prevent damage.
The RCEF-Seed Program, which is a component of Republic Act 11203 or the Rice Tariffication Law which was signed by President Rodrigo Duterte, allots P10 billion fund every year for the rice farmers.
The program is a six-year government initiative to help the farmers compete in the international rice market.
The local government units and lawmakers assist in its implementation.
While PhilRice leads the RCEF-Seed Program, and is the government’s lead agency on rice research and development mandated to help
With eight stations across the country, its programs and projects are in line with the DA’s “Masaganang Ani, Mataas na Kita” battlecry.