The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) in Ilocos, Philippines, through its Provincial Science and Technology Center (PSTC) in Pangasinan, conducted a hydroponics farming end-user training on February 4 at the Municipal Demo-Farm in Buenlag village here.
Arnold Santos, provincial director of PSTC-Pangasinan, said the training aims to capacitate the agri-technicians in charge, municipal officers, teachers, and farmers in running the hydroponics system.
The project aims to provide an efficient farming alternative and a possible way to reduce the operating expenses in growing vegetables and improve the competitiveness and productivity of the farming industry for the residents of Bugallon.
Marc Jude Paul Ancheta, business operations engineer of One Renewable Energy, instructed the participants in the use of hydroponics systems. He introduced the technology, how the system and leaking works, and its benefits. He also taught the procedure and formula in making the nutrient solution needed in planting.
Participants planted lettuce and pechay seedlings as an output of the training. Mr. Christopher Ballesteros, municipal agriculture officer of Bugallon, expressed his gratitude to the DOST for the assistance on the installation of the hydroponics system in the demo farm.
According to Ballesteros, they plan to convert the demo farm as a learning site for interested farmers, students, and members of the academe to influence them in putting up hydroponics in their area.
For DOST, Santos hopes that this hydroponics system will be replicated in other barangays.
Soon, the Agency will launch a greenhouse hydroponics farming system in Bugallon as part of the implementation of the innovation, Science, and Technology for Accelerating Regional Technology-Based Development (iSTART) program in the municipality.
This program aims to support balanced development geographically by accelerating regional growth through science, technology, and innovation.
In Pangasinan, there are six pilot areas for iSTART which include the towns of Alcala, Balungao, Bugallon, Malasiqui, San Fabian, and Sual.