TABUK, Kalinga – The Department of Agriculture (DA) distributed last week hybrid vegetable seeds in the province to benefit at least 1,600 families.

Provincial Agriculture Officer Gerry Jose said the distribution is under DA’s Gulayan Para sa Masa program which encourages farmers to produce alternative products such as high value commercial crops (HVCC).

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Each municipality received two boxes of assorted pinakbet seeds, which included pechay and Baguio beans distributed to at least 100 farmers per municipality, Jose said.

DA implements flagship programs to address hunger and malnutrition especially among the poor, covered under its Accelerated Hunger Mitigation Program.

Under this, government provides small farmers sources of proper nutrition as well as extra income through livelihood projects, Jose said.

Farmers in the province suffered heavy losses from successive typhoons that hit the province last year and are still recovering.

Jose said the new round of HVCC seeds distribution makes farmers generate extra income that would relieve them of their losses.

In a related development, five farmer-beneficiaries received each a unit of small shallow tube wells as support facility to HVCC production. The tube wells or motorized water pumps costing about P35,000 per unit went to beneficiaries in Balbalan, Pinukpuk, Tanudan, Rizal and Tabuk.

Jose said the units come from DA-CAR as part of its El Nino rehabilitation program to farmers affected by the recent dry spell. (Larry Lopez)