(L-R)Dipolog City Mayor Darel Dexter T. Uy, Vice-Mayor Horacio B. Velasco, Provincial Agriculturist Celsa Gayapa, DA Regional Information Officer Maria Melba B. Wee, and City Agriculturist Jose Kerr Porlas pledged to consume brown rice and other staple food aside from white rice during the BROWN4good launching in Dipolog City on August 30, 2016.

“We will support the BROWN4good Challenge because this project brings goodness to the consumers, the farmers, and most of all it will help those who have less in life,” spurred Hon. Darel Dexter T. Uy, Mayor of Dipolog City, Zamboanga del Norte.
The BROWN4good Challenge was officially launched by the Department of Agriculture (DA) at the Boulevard, Dipolog City on August 31, 2016.

Zamboanga Peninsula has more than P1.52 billion portfolio under the Infrastructure Development component of the Philippine Rural Development Project (PRDP) out of the P18.5 Billion project cost allocation nationwide.

In a press conference held in Ipil last week, Regional Director Constancio G. Alama bared the accomplishments and on-going activities of PRDP in Region IX since December 2014.

“Lots of activities were undertaken in the field yet we missed to inform the people fully. We need you to amplify the things we have done, not only in PRDP but all the programs and projects undertaken by DA,” Regional Director Constancio G. Alama told the media practitioners in Zamboanga Sibugay.

Some 500 students enjoyed a cup of brown rice chow fanduring the Brown Rice symposium held at Zamboanga del Sur National High School (ZSNHS) Gymnasium, Pagadian City on August 18, 2016.

“It’s my first time to eat brown rice. I love it because it’s delicious and it makes me feel so full,” Jolina M. Guiling, Grade 7, said after consuming her meal.

Maria Melba B. Wee, Regional Information Officer stressed, “brown rice is not a variety of rice rather it is an unpolished rice; meaning it has undergone only single pass of milling. With this kind of process,brown rice ismore nutritious, and has 75% higher milling recovery compared to white rice. Regular consumption of brown rice helps reduce cancer incidence and heart diseases.”

“It is my moral obligation to provide available and affordable food for my people,” as President Rodrigo Duterte said in a book entitled “Feeding Millions” authored by now Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel F. Piñol. Realizing this is DA’s MaunladnaAgrikulturaSa Nayon (MANA), special project that would support and match an enhanced provision of agricultural investments and services to empower more farmers and fisherfolk.

Participants to the 2016 Regional Food Terminal Summit

Currently, 67 Food Terminals (FT) are operational in Region 9; 23 in Zamboanga del Sur, 25 in Zamboanga del Norte, 8 in Zamboanga Sibugay , 3 in Isabela City and 8 in Zamboanga City.
This year’s 5th Summit theme “Improving Food Accessibility through Market Linkages and Convergence” will strengthen the existence and sustain the food terminal in their respective area. As encouraged by Mr. Ferdinand Gamorot the Regional Focal person for Food Terminal project said that “one of the marching orders of Secretary Manny Piñol of the Department of Agriculture is to ensure the availability and affordability of food for Filipinos. This is where our Food Terminals would come in. We have a big contribution in ensuring not just available food but at the same time affordable for the consumers.”

Some 40 farmers attend the GAP Corn training in SitioTaloptap, Vitali, Zamboanga City. Seated are resource speakers from DA Corn Program, Integrated Laboratory, Engineering and Vitali District Office.

About 40 participants joined the two-day training for Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) for Corn held at Sinoropan Elementary School, Vitali district, Zamboanga City recently.
The GAP training is conducted in coordination with the Office of the City Agriculturist through its field office.
According to Arben Madugo, Vitali District– Agriculture field officer, the existing corn area in Vitali covers approximately 200 hectares. Corn farmers usually do two to three croppings per year depending on variety used. Magdugo said corn is one of the priority commodities in Vitali as it is also one of the staple food aside from rice. “We are grateful for DA and this opportunity to enhance our farmer’s knowledge on the operations in corn production from site selection to post harvest activities. We hope that with the adaptation of the best practices, it would lessen production waste and increase corn output and also farmers’ income.”

DA Rice Coordinator Evelyn Academia hands over the key of responsibility to Titay MAO Bienvenido Tomas and to Unnie A. Cap-atan, the SWISA San Antonio President.

The 4.7 million irrigation facility will provide water service to nearby barangays of San Antonio in the Municipality of Titay. Its priority is the large areas of rice fields where water supply is scarce.
The Department of Agriculture (DA) – IX through its Engineering Division recently turned over the Diversion Dam with Canal to the San AntonioSmall Water Irrigation System Association (SWISA). The launching ceremony was held at the irrigation site in the presence of the barangay captain Evelyn Cabadunga. All eight members of the barangay council stood as witnesses to the turnover ceremony.

The Zamboanga Peninsula showcased Dumingag- Zamboanga del Sur’s Organic Municipality, in hosting for the first time nationwide National Convergence Initiative (NCI) Journalism Writeshop.
Some 40 active participants composing information officers, NCI knowledge component members, representatives of NCI lead agencies and some from the Local Government Units (LGUs), nationwide joined the recently conducted Training on Journalism and Development Communication Reporting. The three-day event was held at Four Queens Resort, Tiguma, Pagadian City.

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