PILI, CAMARINES SUR – The Department of Agriculture in Bicol headed by Regional Executive Director Rodel P. Tornilla and Camarines Sur Governor Luigi Villafuerte led the distribution and turn over of various interventions worth P79.9 M to over 3,000 farmers from the five municipalities of Cam. Sur on December 18, 2023.

The distribution and turn over were held at the Ka Fuerte Stadium, Capitol Compound in Cadlan, Pili, Camarines Sur.

The DA 5 Rice Program distributed P42,038,082 worth Fertilizer Discount Voucher and P380,000 worth inbred palay seeds. Accredited merchants also brought their fertilizer products to the venue so that the farmers could already claim the fertilizer.

Some 1,000 rice farmers who have not received the P5,000 Rice Farmer Financial Assistance for CY 2022 were also given the chance to get their cash assistance. The total RFFA amounted to P5 Million.

The Corn Program turned over three (3) units hauling trucks totalling P5,055,000 to Mantila Agrarian Reform Farmers Assn. of Sipocot, Cam. Sur; Macalidong Rice, Corn and Vegetables Farmers Association of Ligao City, Albay and Sagladab Farmers Association of Lagonoy, Camarines Sur.

The HVCDP under the Coconut Farmers and Industry Development Program (CFIDP) distributed fertilizer, gardening tools and cacao planting materials worth P3,211,505.

The Agribusiness and Marketing Assistance Division (AMAD) turned over P5M worth Kadiwa Financial Grant to three qualified farmers groups, namely: San Fernando SWISA Agriculture Cooperative (P2M); LGU San Jose, Camarines Sur (P500,000) for Partido Sapa Agri Coop; LGU Iriga City (P500,000) for Tadyong Farmers Assn. Inc.; and Cabangal Palsong ARB and Fisherfolk Cooperative.

Meanwhile, the Phil. Center for Postharvest Develoment and Mechanization (Philmech) turned over 11 units of combine harvesters worth P19,250,000 to qualified farmers’ cooperatives and associations. These combine harvesters were funded under the Rice Competitiveness Enhancement Fund (RCEF).

DA Bicol Regional Executive Director Rodel P. Tornilla thanked the farmers whom he say are the “modern day heroes” for working very hard to bring food in the table of every Bicolano home.

It will be recalled that Governor Villafuerte was one of the ten governors of the country who was called on a meeting with DA Secretary Francisco Tiu Laurel, Jr. as Camarines is one of the top 10 rice producing provinces of the country.

Also present during the awarding and turn over were Hilda Pacis representing Senator Cynthia Villar; Vice Governor Sal Fortuno, Jr.; Board Members of Camarines Sur; DA RTD Luz R. Marcelino; DA AMAD Chief Adelina A. Losa; DA Field Operations Chief Dr. Mary Grace Rodriguez and APCO for Camarines Sur Marcial Bustarga. (Lovella P. Guarin – RAFIS 5)