THE Department of Agriculture (DA) for Central Luzon, led by the Regulatory Division with the Bureau of Plant Industry (BPI) as national inspectors, continues to provide certification to farms complying with the rules set by its Philippine Good Agricultural Practices or PhilGAP.
New certifications were given out to farm from July 12 to 16 in the region, as the DA aims to strengthen and make farmers and fishermen competitive and achieve food security in the country through GAP.
The GAP promotes the safety of farmer, good quality of the harvest and good health for consumers. Just a few of the commodities on each certified farm are lime, onion, mango, guava, jackfruit, cassava, papaya, corn and assorted vegetables.
In total, 18 (14 new and 4 renewal of certification) farms passed the final inspection by the Regional GAP team and BPI. Apart from this, it also conducted annual monitoring on 44 farms in the provinces of Nueva Ecija, Tarlac, Pampanga and Zambales.
According to the Regional GAP team, at their meeting held last June, farmers who practice hydroponics systems are being given the opportunity to obtain GAP certification. This gives consideration to farmers who do not use land in their food production.
So far, there are a total of 177 GAP certified farms throughout Central Luzon.