W. Visayas agri research center celebrates 65 years

Zarlina Cuello, Regional Technical Director for Research and Regulation, shares her insights into the rich history of WESVIARC.
Zarlina Cuello, Regional Technical Director for Research and Regulation, shares her insights into the rich history of WESVIARC.
Former OIC Regional Executive Director Peter Sobrevega expresses gratitude to the dedicated personnel who have been integral to the center’s success.
Former OIC Regional Executive Director Peter Sobrevega expresses gratitude to the dedicated personnel who have been integral to the center’s success.

Epitomizing six decades and five years of unwavering commitment, innovation, and resilience in sustainable agricultural development, the Western Visayas Integrated Agricultural Research Center (WESVIARC) celebrated its remarkable 65th founding anniversary on May 7-10.

Under the theme “Cultivating sustainability and resilience through innovative research for development for a food secure and vibrant community,” WESVIARC hosted a series of engaging activities to commemorate this significant milestone.

The commemorative event witnessed an array of distinguished guests, including former OIC Regional Executive Director Peter Sobrevega, who reminisced on his tenure at WESVIARC, expressing gratitude to the dedicated personnel who have been integral to the center’s success.

Iloilo City Agriculture Office Chief Inigo Garingalao also graced the occasion.

Regional Technical Director for Research and Regulation Dir. Zarlina Cuello shared insights into the rich history of WESVIARC, tracing its origins back to the establishment of the Visayas Experiment Station in 1959.

From its inception, WESVIARC has served as a vital hub for research, production, and training, evolving into a cornerstone institution dedicated to advancing agricultural practices in the region.

At the heart of the celebration were field tours showcasing WESVIARC’s cutting-edge facilities, including the SMART Greenhouse, Crop Protection Center, Mushroom Training Building, and Tissue Culture Lab, offering participants a firsthand glimpse into the center’s pioneering research initiatives.

A techno forum facilitated discussions on key topics such as goat production, participatory varietal selection, and Batuan processing, highlighting WESVIARC’s role as a catalyst for innovation and knowledge exchange.A photo gallery was also set up to allow employees to reminisce about the past and give tribute to the history of WESVIARC.

Reflecting on the center’s multifaceted functions, RTD Cuello underscored WESVIARC’s significant role in facilitating research and development aligned with the mandates of the Department of Agriculture; collaborating closely with academic institutions, WESVIARC conducts applied research and provides essential technical assistance to farmers, contributing to the production of high-quality farming products and the certification of rice seeds.

Highlighting the collaboration between WESVIARC and the Bureau of Agricultural Research (BAR) agriculturist Marnelie Gadong-Subong of DA-BAR PMED, who represented BAR Director Junel Soriano, delivered a keynote address reaffirming BAR’s commitment to strengthening the agricultural R&D system.

She emphasized BAR’s dedication to consolidating and enhancing the effectiveness of agriculture and fisheries R&D, stressing the importance of collaboration with entities like WESVIARC to address challenges, promote innovation, and achieve meaningful outcomes for the community.

This collaboration, she noted, reflects a strategic alignment of values and objectives aimed at fostering a food-secure and vibrant agricultural sector in the Western Visayas region.

On the second day of the 2024 Farmers’ Techno Forum during the 65th WESVIARC Founding Anniversary, attendees enthusiastically shared knowledge about the Masagana Rice Program, rice wet season interventions, seed certification, fuel assistance, cacao, coffee, and vegetable production technologies.

On the third and final day of the forum, there was a full-day meaningful discussion among agriculturists, farmers, and industry practitioners focusing on Corn and Cassava, Dairy Production and Corn Silage Technology, and Organic Agriculture. On the fourth day, the emphasis was on a Sportsfest and Orientation on GSIS, PHILHEALTH, and PAG-IBIG benefits, organized by the Department of Agriculture Employees Association (DAEA) for the employees, aimed at fostering camaraderie, improving health, promoting wellness, and preserving Filipino values and culture.

In alignment with Sustainable Development Goals, WESVIARC’s endeavors resonate with SDG 11 (sustainable cities), SDG 12 (responsible consumption and production), and SDG 13 (climate action), underscoring its contributions to global development efforts.

As WESVIARC continues to forge partnerships with government agencies and local stakeholders, its research outcomes serve as vital resources for informed decision-making, ultimately driving positive change and fostering a resilient agricultural sector in the Western Visayas region.( PR)

Some scenes at the 65th founding anniversary of the Western Visayas Integrated Agricultural Research Center
Some scenes at the 65th founding anniversary of the Western Visayas Integrated Agricultural Research Center
Some scenes at the 65th founding anniversary of the Western Visayas Integrated Agricultural Research Center
Some scenes at the 65th founding anniversary of the Western Visayas Integrated Agricultural Research Center
Some scenes at the 65th founding anniversary of the Western Visayas Integrated Agricultural Research Center
Some scenes at the 65th founding anniversary of the Western Visayas Integrated Agricultural Research Center

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