Friday, May 24, 2019

School hopes to ignite passion for farming in students

Balamban Intensive Skills and Technology Incorporated (BISTI), Romelito "Boy" Mantuhac, 57,

CENTRAL Visayas' first ever farm school will open this June to encourage the younger generation not just to discover their passion for farming but to learn how to earn from it.

The Balamban Intensive Skills and Technology Incorporated (BISTI), owned by Romelito "Boy" Mantuhac, 57, with his industrial partner, Oliver Patlingrao, 60, will offer extensive agriculture courses that are aimed at cultivating not only the soil but interest in farming, one of the country's sectors that needs more aid.

In their official Facebook page, the Deparment of Agriculture (DA) 7 stated that the farm school is situated in Barangay Cantuod and will focus on teaching agriculture and agribusiness among other courses.

As of now, the farm school is intensifying its preparations for a full blast operation this year.

Mantujac said the agriculture students will be motivated to learn how to grow their own fruits and vegetables that will soon give them a yearly income to compensate for or even top their production costs.

Technology will also be integrated when students in the computer classes will analyze using data from the farm that will reflect the profitability of farming.

Last year, from September to October, inflation went as high as 6.7 percent in the region as government agencies pushed for more support for the agriculture sector.

In a statement, the National Economic and Development Authority (Neda), Department of Finance (DOF) and the Deparment of Budget and Management (DBM), said they will prioritize steps on fostering adaptive farming practices.

"Ensuring sufficient supply of rice and other major agricultural products from local sources likewise remain crucial over the near term with the looming El Niño phenomenon in 2019. Short-maturing, high- yielding, and resilient varieties of crops should be utilized, alongside efficient water management systems," the statement said.

"Over the medium to long-term, reassessing the vulnerability and suitability of farm areas should also be prioritized to bring forth adaptive farming activities," the statement added.

The agriculture sector, which is highly affected by calamities like typhoons that often hit the country, need all the help it can get especially from the younger generation, the DA-7 said.

The farm school, which will utilize a 3.4 hectare ground, will also have a breeding ground for farm animals such as hogs, sheep, goats, native chicken, quail and a wide range of animal production.

The courses that are offered are crop and animal production, big and small ruminants, horticulture, organic agriculture, artificial insemination, milking, animal health and aquaculture, among others, the DA-7 said.

Senior high school courses in the BISTI will also concentrate on farming.

The DA-7 said the office of Senator Juan Edgardo Angara is also pouring out a P12 million fund for scholarship in agriculture can be availed in June.


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