Ten junior high school students (JHS) battled it out in the ASPIRE 2018’s Poster Making Contest held at Mindpro Citimall, Zamboanga City recently.

The contest spearheaded by Department of Agriculture regional office IX - Agribusiness and Marketing Assistance Division, Information Division, and the High Value Crops Development Program; intends to increase awareness on the Agribusiness Support for Promotion and Investment in Regional Expositions (ASPIRE) to the young through artistic expression.

It is a part of the side events of ‘AGRI-VENTA’ with the theme, “Expanding market opportunities for ZamPen’s priority agriculture and fishery products”.

Cacao has become one of the emerging priority commodities in the region with farmers and their families getting engaged in cacao production. With the growing demand for this commodity there is the need to further capacitate the farmers on cacao production, processing, and marketing because the potential of the region in terms of production and marketing is relatively high.

Engr. Roger Bagaforo, Chief of Research Division of the Department of Agriculture IX (DA) said the conduct of the Cacao Forum will serve as an avenue for both the farmers and government institutions to dialogue and come to terms on how to further develop the cacao industry. “In the next two years we will not focus on the distribution of cacao seedlings but rather on the establishment of processing centers for cacao to further boost the cacao industry and make it more competitive in the local and international market as a processed product”, he said.

About 400 hundred received agricultural support from the Department of Agriculture’s (DA) High Value Crops Development Program (HVCDP) in its Outreach Program held last week in the municipalities of Pitogo, Lapuyan, and Kumalarang in Zamboanga del Sur province.

The three municipalities were selected to be part of the second leg of the HVCDP outreach program in the said province. “Out of the 26 municipalities and 1 city in Zamboanga del Sur, your place was one of the three which were chosen so that alone is already a big privilege”, reiterated Dr. Carlito Larubis, Agricultural Program Coordinator for ZDS, in each municipality visited.

 

This is the 7th year the Department of Agriculture (DA) held the Rice Achievers Awarding Ceremony to recognize provinces, cities and municipalities, Irrigators’ associations (IAs) and small water irrigation system associations (SWISAs) for their outstanding and significant contribution to the rice industry.

Held at the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC), Pasay City on May 31, 2018, two provinces in Zamboanga Peninsula bagged the most outstanding award for 2017 Rice Achievers.

Zamboanga del Sur, under the governance of Governor Antonio H. Cerilles, and Zamboanga Sibugay under Governor Wilter Y. Palma. They each received trophies and checks worth Php4 million, respectively.

Some 200 corn farmers actively participated in the Department of Agriculture Corn Roadshow in Dinas, Zamboanga del Sur and Malangas, Zamboanga Sibugay recently.

DA9 through its information drive fosters the use of new corn farming technologies to increase production. The Corn roadshow also promotes the practice of biological controls to produce healthy corn even on unfavorable weather conditions.

Mango prices in Zamboanga City play at 100-120 pesos per kilo at the local market. While this may be a good price for producers; it is otherwise for the consuming public.

The lack of mango supply causes prices to increase. According to the City Agriculture Office, the supply of mango in the market has been declining due to last years’ damage from weather cyclones that hit the region. “Strong winds won’t be able to save the mango trees in bloom; those trees that were sprayed all went down during the heavy rains. Mango farmers won’t be able to recover in time for harvest in the summer.” said Mr. Antonio Magsino, Jr. of the city agriculture - high value crops development program (HVCDP)-crop protection section. Magsino said the typhoons in October and December last year (2017) left the mango trees unfruitful in the east of the city.

In light of the National Women’s Month celebration, the Department of Agriculture Regional Field Office IX (DA9) initiated a 4-day trade exposition dubbed as ‘Tienda-Tienda’ which will run from March 21 to 24 along Rizal Street (fronting RedCross), this city.

Eight (8) local traders participated in the said event showcasing their authentic products such as bagon gata, baulo, peanuts, peanut brittle, calamansi juice, banana crackers and alfajor, naturally grown crops like coconuts, watermelons, bananas, assorted fruits; black and brown rice, to include the organic vermicast fertilizer.

Some 1,300 participants composed of farmers, stakeholders, extension workers, City and Municipal Agriculturists joined the National Information Caravan conducted by the Department of Agriculture (DA) in partnership with the Local Government of Zamboanga del Norte with the theme: “Agrikultura Para sa Pagbabago” held at Dipolog City Sports Complex, Brgy. Olingan, Dipolog City last week.

“The Information Caravan aims to raise awareness and bring the services of the department to the farmers by providing helpful and reliable information,” said Ms. Cheryl G. Suarez, Information Chief, Agriculture and Fisheries Information Division (DA-AFID).

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