With the initial distribution of an estimated P100-M worth of machinery grants under the Rice Competitiveness Enhancement Fund (RCEF) Mechanization Program in Northern Mindanao (Region X), it is expected that more rice farmers will be shifting to mechanized farm operations.

A turn-over ceremony was held on August 18, 2020 at Dalwangan, Malaybalay City, Bukidnon which was attended by 23 qualified farmersโ€™ cooperatives and associations (FCAs), officials from the local government units and the DA Regional Field Office X.

An estimated 4,100 rice farmers who belong to FCAs in Region X will directly benefit from the machinery grants. Distributed machines include 19 units of four-wheel tractor, 31 units of hand tractor, 28 units of floating tiller, 2 units of rice precision seeder, 4 units of walk-behind mechanical rice transplanter, 12 units of riding-type mechanical rice transplanter, 8 units of rice reaper, 17 units of rice combine harvester, 8 units of mobile rice mill and one unit of mechanical dryer.

This machinery distribution is but a first of many batches as the program will last for 6 years (2024). These machines are allocated under the 2019 P2-B budget.

Qualified FCAs can become beneficiaries while those who already received machines this year, if they have managed the grants well, can still receive agricultural machines for their association.

The Facility Management and Field Operations Division (FMFOD) of PHilMech is in-charge of the nationwide evaluation, inspection and distribution of machines to qualified FCAs.

Article by Jett Molech G. Subaba