MISAMIS Oriental Governor Yevgeny Emano wants the province to become a major exporter of farm products.

In this view, he urged all stakeholders to back him in his quest to take more steps higher in making agriculture a developing sector in the province, hinting that Misamis Oriental has the best lands and climate which are keys for a progressive agriculture industry.

The governor wants the province to be the leading exporter of fruits and vegetables across the country.

"Five, ten or 15 years from now, we can already bring Misamis Oriental to where its destination should be—a prosperous, bountiful and sustainable province. We have the best lands. We have the best climate. Together, let us make Misamis Oriental an exporter of fruits and vegetables,” Emano told the crowd of stakeholders during the 3rd Climate and Agriculture Summit held in a hotel here, recently.

The whole day activity jointly spearheaded by the provincial government , American Chamber of Commerce (AmCham), and the Philip Morris Fortune Tobacco Corporation (PMFTC) aims to gather all agriculture stakeholders and discuss matters concerning the industry amid the continuing impact of climate change.

The capitol's top official is also seeking the support of the local government units and national agencies in turning the province into an exporter of leading farm products.

Emano emphasized that promoting and developing the agriculture industry would also mean opening the doors of opportunities for the locales.

Emano lauded AMCHAM and PMFTC for the timely discussion of climate change being incorporated to agriculture as it will be 'hitting two birds with one stone.'

“It is very timely to connect agriculture with climate change especially on how we practice agriculture. That I used to be guilty of. Again, I am not ashamed I took up Agriculture major in Animal Science. I farm almost every day, which I would consider myself more as a farmer than a governor. But every time we plant something, we use to put fertilizers as much as we can in the perception to harvest fast and plenty. But not measured properly and can no longer be digested by the plant. This is where agriculture and climate change connect. When rain comes, the fertilizers that are not consumed flow to the rivers. It now destroys the river. From the river flows to the seas that destroy the natural resources. We cut trees, do kaingin even if we don’t know the effect,” Emano said.

“We have to do something right now. We cannot anymore predict the weather. It’s rainy season but no rain comes. It’s dry season yet rain pours. It’s so hard on the side of the farmers. We must act about it,” Emano added.

Acting Provincial Agriculturist Benjamin Resma admitted unpredictable weather condition is the biggest challenge faced by the farmers.

“It’s the weather that we cannot predict whether to rain or not which give our farmers this great challenge. But with the strong directive of the governor that we should seriously give attention to our people in the agriculture sector, being a farmer himself, we assist the farmers by distributing to them free seedlings and orientations,” Resma said.