Sustaining Strides in Agri-Fishery

Article excerpt

MANILA, Philippines - Filipino farmers and fisherfolk are the backbone of the Philippine economy. The government is banking on organized farmers and fisherfolk to sustain the strides made in agriculture and fisheries in 2011. For 2012, a competitive and sustainable agriculture and fisheries sector is being pursued, with the goals of improved food security and increased rural incomes; and, enhanced policy environment governance.

Sufficiency in food staples by 2013 is the main goal of the Food Staples Sufficiency Program of the Department of Agriculture (DA). Major interventions have been laid out such as investments in irrigation, farm mechanization and postharvest systems, community seed banking, and increased investment in research and extension. The active participation of the private sector is being tapped.

Through public-private partnership (PPP) programs, the government is able to build more post-production and marketing facilities, including grains terminals, refrigeration facilities, road networks, and trading posts. In 2010, 17 PPP projects in the agri-fishery sector were presented for funding, among them cold chain systems in Benguet, Cagayan, Visayas, and Mindanao, the Balog-balog multipurpose irrigation project, the Jalaur river project, the Kabulnan 2 power project in Sultan Kudarat and Maguindanao, and the Balintingon reservoir. …