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PIA Press Release
Monday, January 02, 2012


NTA gives P5.4M production assistance to Abra’s tobacco farmers

by Maritess B. Beñas

BANGUED, Abra, Jan. 2(PIA)-- The National Tobacco Administration (NTA) has given a total of P5.4 million to the tobacco–growing farmers of in the province this cropping season.

The production assistance loan package is under the Tobacco Contract Growing System of the NTA to sustain the tobacco industry.

In an interview with NTA Administrator Edgardo D. Zaragoza during the NTA Abra Christmas party, he said he is happy to see the local officials led by Governor Eustaquio P. Bersamin utilizing their share from the tobacco excise taxes under the Republic Act 7171 for the benefit of the tobacco-growers.

In a report made by NTA-Abra branch manager Esmeralda G. Valera, a total of 261 tobacco farmers had already availed of the production loan assistance from the NTA. A total of 160 hectares of tobacco farmlands are being cultivated this cropping season in the 19 tobacco-growing municipalities in the province.

Aside from the production loan assistance, flue curing barns in the different municipalities had also been installed to facilitate the curing of tobacco leaves to obtain better quality of leaves that would command a netter price in the market.

Zaragoza reiterated his advice to the tobacco farmers not to hasten the curing process. He advised the farmers to take time and wait for the leaves to mature enough before harvesting these for better quality.This way, the farmers would get more returns on their investment because the better the quality of the leaves, the higher is the selling price in the market.

Valera also reported that provincial government is still distributing fertilizers to the beneficiaries. But the initial trance of the fertilizer subsidy from the RA 7171 funds of the Provincial Government had all been distributed for the initial cultivation process of the tobacco farming.

Zaragoza came with his Deputy Administrator Everin Molina, and NTA Board of Directors Rogelio Elvena and Geoffrey Gacula. (JDP/MTBB-PIA CAR,Abra)

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