DA reaffirms full support to farmers and fisherfolk

The Department of Agriculture (DA) affirms its full support to farmers and fisherfolk in terms of a program that holistically looks into each segment of the production chain, including research and development as well as postharvest concerns.

This was emphasized by Agriculture Secretary Proceso Alcala in his message during the opening ceremony of the 7th Agriculture and Fisheries Technology Forum and Product Exhibition at the SM Megatrade Hall in Mandaluyong City.

The event, which ran from August 11 to 14, was part of the 24th anniversary celebration of the Bureau of Agricultural Research (BAR), a DA-attached agency. It showcased technologies developed by DA-attached agencies and regional field units, state colleges and universities, and some stakeholders from the private sector.

The Philippine Carabao Center (PCC) was one of the exhibitors and presenter in a popular seminar. The agency highlighted in its display one of its champion dairy farmers such as Engr. Jaime Ramos of Talavera town in Nueva Ecija. Dairy products of smallhold dairy farmers in the province were also showcased.

“This is one venue that shows DA’s farm-to-table program that will make sure that we are giving our all-out support to our farmers and fishers from production to marketing of their produce,” Alcala said.

The annual technology forum and products exhibit highlight the role of research in developing technologies and products that are steadily gaining attention in the world market, he added.

On the other hand, Director Nicomedes Eleazar of the DA-BAR said the event is a venue to showcase agricultural products in the regions that have been outputs of diligent research.

“This event shows that research has now reached the mainstream that even shoppers appreciate its outputs,” he said.

Eleazar pointed that the national government recognizes the importance of research and development as shown by a projected increase to about a billion pesos for the R&D budget in 2012. He said this amount will be lodged next year with BAR as part of DA efforts aimed at further strengthening its research-related endeavors.

He added that BAR is now starting to call for papers based on their R&D agenda.