South Leyte farmers urged to produce more to offset production loss in other provinces affected by El Nino
By Bong Pedalino
Southern Leyte (February 24) -- The challenge rice farmers are facing here is not so much on how to mitigate the ill-effects of El Nino or long drought on their farms.
They are encouraged to plant more high-yielding varieties using certified and hybrid seeds so that at harvest time their output will increase and, in the process, this will offset the losses suffered by badly-hit provinces.
According to Malou Gaviola, a technician at the Office of the Provincial Agriculturist (OPAg), the standing instruction for their office was to motivate the farmers to produce more.
Citing a recent meeting at the Department of Agriculture (DA) regional office last month, Gaviola said the provinces of Leyte and Southern Leyte were singled out as not affected by the El Nino phenomenon.
With such assessment, the task at hand was to ensure an abundant harvest to balance or compensate the expected reduction of output in other rice-producing areas, particularly in Luzon, Gaviola told PIA by phone today.
She said there were no ricefarms in the province yet that are cracking due to searing heat of the sun unlike in other provinces.
There was also no report on dried or drying farms thus far from the Municiapl Agriculturists, adding that as of now there is still sufficient water to irrigate the ricefields in the province. (PIA-Southern Leyte) [top]