DA assures more help for agri sector in E. Visayas

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Saturday, March 15, 2014


TACLOBAN CITY -- Agriculture Secretary Proceso Alcala assured more rehabilitation and intervention programs in agriculture for the benefit of typhoon-affected farmers and fisherfolk in Samar province.

In a recent dialogue with farmers and fishermen, Alcala said the government, upon the directive of President Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino, will be bringing in more help through seeds, farm implements and fishing equipment to revive the agriculture sector in the region.

The secretary said he will be a constant visitor of the region to oversee all the projects and interventions being implemented by the agriculture department through its regional office and line bureaus here.

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Sec. Alcala visited and communed with farmers and fisherfolk in Basey and Marabut in Samar province during the week.

In Marabut, Sec. Alcala urged coconut farmers to go for other “alternative crops” as coconut farms are being rehabilitated to give them vital income and productive capacity during the six to eight years it will take for their trees to become fully productive again.

However, he assured farmers intervention for coconut plantation that would enable them to harvest in the shortest time possible. Clearing of felled coconut trees all over the region were already ordered fast tracked according to the secretary.

“Meanwhile, we need to plant other crops so we can still have produce and thereby earn us some income,” Sec. Alcala told farmers.

He likewise urged the farmers to go into livestock rearing such as goats and sheeps.

In the said visit, various agricultural projects were given that include hybrid seeds, certified seeds, fertilizer, vegetable seeds, seedlings, planting materials and gardening tools.

Earlier, the DA chief, also committed to continue the agency’s cash for work program for the fisherfolk, and even to coconut farmers as part of the livelihood component in early recovery efforts in the province.

The typhoon devastated agriculture sector with losses of around 1.1 million tons of crops and 33 million coconut trees damaged or destroyed. The entire Region as a beneficiary of numerous agriculture programs from national government is contributing an average 6.7 percent to industry growth with unprecedented increase in rice production and sufficiency in the region. (PNA)

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