Agri bureau to embark on massive corn planting-A A +A
Tuesday, October 23, 2012
THE Department of Agriculture (DA) is embarking on a program of massive corn planting in nine towns and one city that would cover an area of at least 1,300 hectares in Zamboanga Peninsula.
The program is aimed to produce at least an average yield of three tons per hectare or a total production of 3,900 metric tons of white corn grains, said Felizardo Salomes, DA regional corn coordinator.
The areas covered by the program are: Diplahan, Imelda, and Siay, Zamboanga Sibugay province; Dapitan City and Polanco, Zamboanga del Norte; and, Bayog, Lakewood, Tukuran, Mahayag, and Dumingan, Zamboanga del Sur.
The implementation of the program is in support to the Food Staple Sufficiency Program (FSSP) of DA, Salomes said.
The corn planting program will be launched in the target areas in December this year and in January of next year, he said.
The seeds for the program will be provided by the Production Support Services Component of the Agri-Pinoy Corn Program under its seed exchange subsidy, Salomes added.
Five packs of Bio-N seed inoculant will be given out per bag of corn seeds to minimize input requirements particularly Urea.
He said the region is generally sufficient in white corn for human consumption and it can address high demand for white corn in Central Visayas as there are more Cebuanos whose staple is corn.
In terms of market access, corn can be transported to Cebu via the ports of Sindangan and Liloy towns and Dipolog City in Zamboanga del Norte, he said.
Water may be the limiting factor in other areas but water supply is just adequate even in the absence of rain in the 10 identified areas in the region, he added.
“Harvest falls on the dry months and postharvest is not a problem. The advantage of off-season production is that price is high due to the scarcity of supply,” Salomes said. “This will provide better income for the farmers.” (Bong Garcia)