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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.

During the roadshow, Regional Corn Report Officer, Lorilee F. Estrevillo presented the various services and assistance offered by the DA to all corn farmers which they can avail. Estrevillo emphasized working together as one of the secrets to success.

“We encourage you to create a group or be a member of any association or cooperative because DA provides assistance to active organizations that show unity towards better farming.” she said.

Pre and Postharvest equipment, trainings on postharvest facilities and support for establishment of demonstration farms are some of which corn farmers can avail.

Hon. Felicito C. Chavez, the Acting Municipal Mayor in Dinas, ZDS also encouraged farmers to help one another and share information they learn to each other. “All the assistance given by the government will be useless if we will not work together as one. Your success will also be our success.” he said.

Topics discussed in the roadshow include (1) significance of soil sampling; (2) the use of BIO-N-the nitrogen supplement for corn; (3) essential benefits of using Trichogramma evanescens –the biological control for corn borers and (4) the importance of applying good agricultural practices to avoid Aflatoxin contamination and how it affects the human and animal organs in case of possible intake.

Julieto C. Abesada, a farmer from Dinas shared his pleasure to know about Soil Testing. He has always just planted crops, applied fertilizer and harvested crops and repeats the cycle. His parents would always say give time for the soil to rest. But they also didn’t have any idea that the soil needs to be tested to check their nutrient content before applying any fertilizer.

“Thank you to DA, I will make sure my soil get analyzed before applying any fertilizer,” he said.

While Elizabeth B. Dupla, a farmer from Malangas, Zamboanga Sibugay, said that she has never tried using BIO-N and Trichogramma because she thought that it was one of those chemical fertilizers that harm the health. But upon understanding its importance and content, she said, “I am encouraged to try Bio-N and Trichogramma and I am also excited to see its results.”

Statistics Authority reported that in 2017, Zamboanga Peninsula’s white and yellow corn production marked a total of 234,455 metric tons. Zamboanga del Sur shared 134,013mt while Zamboanga Sibugay with 27,995 only. (MDaguro/DA9)