Some 70 multi-sector stakeholders composed of farmer leaders, Regional Agricultural and Fishery Council (RAFC) sectoral chairpersons, private sector representatives, provincial LGU partners, SUCs, and partner agencies participated in the Civil Society Organization (CSOs) Consultation on DA Bicol’s FY 2023 plans and budget proposal.

Regional Executive Director Rodel P. Tornilla said that the annual CSO consultation was a means to institutionalize citizens’ participation in the crafting of DA’s budget to empower them through fiscal transparency, accountability and participation.

Aloha Gigi I. Bañaria, Chief of the Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation Division (PMED) presented the proposed P7.2 billion budget of DA Bicol for FY 2023. P3.4 billion was proposed for Tier 1 and P3.7 billion for Tier 2. Bañaria added that DA Bicol has P2.7 billion approved budget under the General Appropriations Act for 2022.

Earl Vincent Vegas, Rice and Corn regional focal person presented the Rice, Corn and Cassava proposed budget. Dr. Mary Grace DP. Rodriguez, chief of the Field Operations Division presented the High Value Crops Development Program, Special Area for Agricultural Development (SAAD) and 4Ks proposed budgets. Dr. Marissa M. Guillermo presented the Livestock and Poultry program budget. The Market Development Services and Organic Agriculture budget were presented by Maria Cristina Campita; the Plant and Animal Regulation Services and HALAL program were presented by Rosita Imperial, Chief of Regulatory Division; Research and Development budget was presented by R&D Chief Corazon Orbon; Laboratory Services by Lorenzo Alvina, Chief of the Integrated Laboratories Division; and Agri-Fishery Engineering Services and FMR by Engr. Gilbert Salcedo, OIC of RAED.

Mary Ann Cuya, chief of the PMED Planning and Programming Section presented the FY 2023 thrusts and priorities and bases in the crafting of the 2023 budget proposal. She said that Food Systems Policies based on the Food Security Development Framework were taken into consideration to sustainably feed a growing population in the “new normal.” These policies include increasing food sufficiency level of basic food and other commodities; focusing on the production-to-consumption value chain; empowering the marginalized sector and supporting diverse distribution efforts with good logistics; addressing hunger and malnutrition and elevating biosecurity measures.

Chief Statistical Specialist Danilo V. Lucena of PSA presented the agricultural sector  performance of Bicol for FY 2019-2021.  (Lovella P. Guarin DA RAFIS 5)