COTABATO CITY—Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Agrarian Reform (MAFAR), in collaboration with Department of Agriculture-Philippine Center for Postharvest Development and Mechanization (DA-PHilMech), distributed agricultural machineries to farmer cooperatives from Maguindanao on Wedneday, Dec. 15.
Twenty-eight (28) Farmer’s Cooperatives and Associations (FCAs), with a total of 4,803 farmer-members, coming from the said province are expected to directly benefit from this mechanization program worth Php34,665,000.00.
MAFAR Minister Dr. Mohammad S. Yacob mentioned the need to start utilizing mechanized farming in the Bangsamoro region since most of the region in the country are already using farm machineries from their land preparation up to harvest time.
“We are very thankful to DA-National, specifically to PHilMech, on this farm machineries assistance which is surely a big help to our farmers in increasing their farm productivity and could possibly alleviate their poverty living status through this mechanization process,” Yacob said.
Meanwhile, MAFAR Maguindanao Provincial Director Dr. Ronjamin Maulana recognized the strict selection process that recipients went through. He hoped that with the help of the farm machineries, Maguindanao will soon become among the top rice producer provinces in the country.
“This program manifested the full commitment of the national government to support and extend assistance to the regional government with their trust and confidence to the good leadership of BARMM Government and the MAFAR, in particular,” Maulana added.
The distributed agricultural machineries were composed of 12 units of four wheel tractor, 18 units of hand tractor, 10 units of floating tiller, 1 unit Precision Seeder, 6 Units Walk-behind Transplanter, 10 units Reaper, 3 units Combine Harvester, 10 units Axial Flow Thresher, and 1 unit Recirculating Dryer under the Rice Competitiveness Enhancement Fund (RCEF)-Mechanization Component to increase farmers’ productivity, profitability, and competitiveness through mechanized production and post-production systems.
DA Secretary William Dar explained the benefits of comprehensive mechanization farming in the country which address the high production cost and post-harvest loses compared to traditional way of farming.
“Today, we turnover various agricultural machineries to enable them (farmers) to improve productivity (in the region) and increase gains and practice in the years to come,” Dar said.
“Sa pamamagitan ng ating pagkakaisa, kayang-kaya po nating itaguyod ang isang masigla at modernong sector ng agrikultura at isang bansang may matibay na seguridad na pagkain at magsasaka at mangingisdang may maunlad at payapang pamumuhay,” he added. (Bangsamoro Information office)