THE Department of Agriculture (DA) has awarded Negrense Jesus Antonio Orbida as finalist in this year’s National Organic Agriculture Achievers Award (NOAAA) small farmer (individual) category.
The multi-awarded integrated and organic farmer received a trophy from the DA officials led by Undersecretary Evelyn Laviña, who is also the alternate chair of the National Organic Agriculture Board (NOAB), during the National Organic Agriculture Congress in Alfonso, Cavite Tuesday night, November 12.
He was joined by Office of the Provincial Agriculturist (OPA) officials and personnel headed by Provincial Agriculturist Japhet Masculino.
Orbida, who is one of the three finalists, said “we are entering a new decade in less than two months, the year 2020.”
With this, he is hoping that Negros Occidental will have a more perfect vision for the organic agriculture programs.
“Also, more government interventions and incentives to organic agriculture practitioners,” Orbida added.
The NOAAA is an annual competition of the DA that recognizes organic agriculture development initiatives in the country.
It can be recalled that prior to the national awarding rites, Orbida received first the award for the same category in the 2019 Regional Organic Agriculture Achievers Awards (ROAAA) in Iloilo City in September.
“The honor is also for the province and Binalbagan,” he earlier said, adding that this is the first time that the town has vied for any national award on organic agriculture.
Prior to these recognitions, Orbida was also a recipient of various awards including the Outstanding Coconut Farmer in the Pasidungog sa Panguma, Pangisda kag Pangkasapatan in 2017, Negros Island Outstanding Coconut farmer in 2017, Outstanding Coconut Farmer in the Third Niyogros Festival and 2018 Regional Coconut Week Celebration, 2018 Regional Gawad Saka Outstanding Coconut, and national finalist Outstanding Coconut Farmer in 2018.
Also last year, he was recognized by the Provincial Government of Negros Occidental for coconut and integrated farming during the 2nd Food Production Heroes Assembly.
Their association, PeacePond Farmers Association, also bagged the 2018 The Outstanding Farmer of the Philippines (Tofarm) gold award for agriculture initiatives category.
The latest recognition obtained by Orbida is being the 2019 Outstanding Negrosanon for organic farming given by the Provincial Government of Negros Occidental during the recent commemoration of Al Cinco de Noviembre.
In an earlier interview, Orbida told SunStar Bacolod that “the national recognition is just a bonus on our hard work as organic farming practitioners. It would be a bigger reward for us to encourage and teach more farmers to go organic.”