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Philippines: Dept of Ag to develop smart farming communities in Cagayan Valley

The Department of Agriculture (DA) Regional Office 2 recently trained agricultural extension workers, municipal agriculturists, agricultural researchers, experiment station heads, and some farmers' organizations on how to establish smart farming communities in the Cagayan Valley Region.

Carol P. Albay, High-Value Crops Development Program and National Urban and Peri-Urban Agriculture Program (NUPAP) coordinator said the training aims to equip the participants with the appropriate knowledge and skills to transform agriculture into a more technology-based farming system.

"This training course is an instrument for us to help address the challenges on food security and sufficiency through expansive and high technology methods, especially harnessing the potential of communities in the countryside," Albay added.

She also challenged and reminded smart agriculture advocates to be role models not only to farmers but to younger generations to encourage them to venture into agriculture.

Lovemar D. Morales, laboratory technician, demonstrated the actual spawn inoculation for oyster mushroom production while Dr. Kate B. Turo, veterinarian, introduced some techniques in poultry production and management.

The participants were also trained in basic seed production technology, crop breeding, seed testing, and cold storage management.

Parts of the training included visits to some model smart agriculture facilities including the Allied Botanical Corporation Demo Farm in Tayug, Pangasinan to explore ideas for the development of a local seed system in the region.

The group also visited the Pedro Farms in Silang, Cavite to familiarize themselves with the various types of indoor hydroponics cultivation, basic operation, and maintenance of a greenhouse including its new technologies and practices.

NUPAP is the newest banner program of DA, which aims to address the challenges of food security and safety. Through the program, food production in urban and peri-urban areas is expected to increase and the capacity of communities to produce more food for local consumption will be improved.


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