DA launches 9 new barangay bagsakan in Kalinga
by Larry Lopez
Tabuk, Kalinga (19 June) -- The Department of Agriculture (DA) launched nine new barangay bagsakan centers, for a total of 15 in the province since 2004.
Provincial Agriculture Officer Gerry Jose said the nine are distributed in the barangay Upper Uma in Lubuagan; Dupligan in Tanudan; Gawidan, Malalao, Malin-awa in Tabuk; Taga, Malgnat. Three are in the towns of Tinglayan, Rizal and Balbalan.
The Barangay Bagsakan project launched by DA under the integrated Accelerated Hunger Mitigation Program of President Arroyo houses farm products such as rice, corn, livestock, fish, fruits and other high value commercial crops sold at farm-gate prices.
As tie-up project, DA provides P150,000 worth of grant for equipments at the center while recipient provides the housing and lot for the project. Recipient groups should be organized sectors in the barangay like the Rural Improvement Clubs (RIC), barangay councils and cooperatives.
Jose said existing bagsakan centers in the province are requesting for more rice allocation from the National Food Authority (NFA) since the 10 bags per week allocation is not enough.
From feedbacks of the six operational bagsakan centers, the 10 bags allocation from the NFA is earlier consumed before the next allocation arrives the following week I leaving the center with no rice stock by end of the week, Jose said.
Giving their assessment of how the first six bagsakan has performed, Jose said the groups have accumulated and increased their seed capital, maintaining regular trade operations. Because of providing accessible market right where products come from, the project has encouraged farm production and increased livelihood opportunities at the grassroot, Jose stressed.
The first barangay bagsakan center in the province which opened in the province is in Barangay Agbannawag, operated by Agbannawag Multi-purpose Cooperative. This serves as model to new bagsakan centers with its increased capital and expanded business. (PIA-Kalinga) [top]