LAWMAKERS in the agricultural town of Tuba is pushing for communal farming in the barangays.
Communal farming is an agricultural cooperative in which member-owners jointly engage in farming activities in the barangay level, namely, production of agricultural crops, agro-forest products, livestock and fisheries.
“The concept of this program is to develop and elevate the living conditions of the rural farmers of the municipality of Tuba,” said Councilor Jerome Palaoag, author of the proposed measure.
Known as the "Communal Farming Ordinance of Tuba," Palaoag said that under the ordinance, the Municipal Agriculture Office will assist interested farmers to venture into the program, including planting techniques, seedling production, maintenance technique, post-harvest facility management, proper packaging technique, promotion, distribution and sales management.
The measure orders the town to provide package of incentives to successful communal farm which include financial assistance of P100,000.
Other benefits include trainings, seminars, benchmarking trips, and practicum activities.
In order to obtain incentives, communal farms must be organized into cooperatives and registered to either Department of Agriculture, Cooperative Development Authority, Department of Trade and Industry, Department of Labor and Employment or Securities and Exchange Commission.
The program is patterned after the Kibbutz of the Jewish people from which the income of the communal farm is shared by all members.
The town is keen on promoting rural development programs by enhancing access of the rural agricultural sector to financial services and programs by the municipality that increase livelihood, income efficiency and promote sustained economic growth for rural farmers.
The ordinance covers communal farming programs and identifies specific farming activities that will be adopted and cover only interested barangays of the town.
The mayor’s office will be responsible for the implementation of the ordinance with the barangay officials and the Municipal Agriculture Office while a proposed funding of P500,000 allocated in the general fund.
The Tuba ordinance was referred to the appropriate committees of the Benguet Provincial Board July 8.