November is Rice Awareness Month
Koronadal City (21 November) -- With Presidential Proclamation No. 524 issued by President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo in January 2004, November is declared Rice Awareness Month. The objective of this is to heighten public awareness on rice to address issues relating to malnutrition and poverty, and the attainment of self-sufficiency.
To commemorate this event, Department of Agriculture in region 12 Regional Technical Director Visa T. Dimerin along with Regional Rice Coordinator Ray H. Embajador have kicked off regionwide celebrations marking Rice Awareness Month with a parade with the DA-12 officials and employees and a short program to celebrate the month-long festivity.
This month-long celebration aims to highlight the invaluable contribution of rice farmers to the country's food security. Thus, this year, all activities lined-up for the whole month of November are meant to promote awareness of the significant value of rice farming in the everyday lives of Filipinos, said RTD Dimerin.
Mr. Embajador, on the other hand, added that another component of the DA's promotional program, is linking up farmer co-ops and clusters with markets so they can sell their producers to a greater number of consumers at reasonable or more affordable prices.
The stepped-up restoration by the NIA of irrigations systems, provision of postharvest drying facilities, promotion of high quality genetic materials or further expansion of the total hybrid rice area, are in support of the Arroyo government's goal to attain self-sufficiency in food staples and making farming and fishing highly profitable, especially for small stakeholders like palay growers and fisherfolk, he added.
The program highlighted a rice quiz bee contest participated by inter-secondary schools and a cooking contest with rice (glutinous or malagkit, hybrid and inbred varieties) as the main ingredient.
Koronadal National High School took the 3rd place with a P2,000 cash prize and a Plaque of Recognition, 2nd place is Marbel 7 National High School with P3,000 and also a plaque while the Esperanza National High School bagged the first place with a total cash prize of P5,000 and a Plaque of Recognition.
In the cooking contest, the Tupi Research Outreach Station for Upland and Lowland went home the grand prize of P10,000 cash; 2nd prize went to Balindog Research Outreach Station of Kidapawan City who got a cash prize of P7,000 and; the 3rd prize was garnered by the DA-Satellite Office in Koronadal City with P5,000 cash. The non-winners also received consolation prize of P2,000 each.
This year's theme is "Sapat na Pagkain sa lahat, Kabuhayan ay Angat." (DA12/PIA 12) [top]