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PIA Press Release
2010/11/09

Over 100 farmers complete corn training in Negros Occidental

Bacolod City (9 November) -- More than 100 farmers completed the Science and Technology Training for the Development of a Sustainable Corn Industry in Negros Occidental held at the Negros State College of Agriculture (NSCA) in Kabankalan City, southern Negros Occidental, recently.

Nestor Servando, one of the 100 farmers who graduated from the training said that the concern of the government on the plight of farmers is not just lip-service, it's real.

Servando, a farmer-leader of Barangay Oringao, Kabankalan City said he is happy and thankful that the first-ever Negros tripartite training was conducted. He said he learned a lot because the training was basic and easy-to-understand.

"What I really like is the coming and working together of farmers, academicians and technicians on teaching and learning corn technology. Our instructors learned from our ideas and experiences while we learned appropriate technology and interventions from them," said the 46-year old farmer.

"I will use this knowledge on increasing production and income to have enough money to spend for the schooling of my seven children," said Servando. "I will also share this knowledge with my fellow farmers," he added.

Servando only finished elementary but owns half a hectare of corn, and one hectare each of rice, sugarcane, and forest trees.

Alejandro Nalagon, meanwhile, said the first part of the year-round training on corn was like one year of studying Agriculture.

He said yield on corn could be higher if the right technology and approaches are used," said the 32-year old Agriculture graduate who works as a guard at NSCA. "I am even more determined to be a corn farmer. All I need is capital," said the farmer from Barangay Tabugon, also in Kabankalan.

Nalagon, a Crop Science major, presented his study on the effectiveness of the Nuclear Polyhedrosis Virus on earworm-infected corn at the Technology Forum the day before the graduation rites.

Another graduate Eliseo Javalde, Jr. of the Calatrava Agriculture Office said he has become a more effective agricultural technician. "We kept attending even if we have budgetary constraints because we are inspired at the farmers' attentiveness and openness to learn. Our interactions were interesting and lively," he said.

Small farmers and agriculturists from municipal and city governments recently received their certificates of completion for the first phase of the training from Regional Technical Director Joyce Wendam and Regional Corn Coordinator Ricardo Saltin of the Department of Agriculture Regional Field Office 6 (DA-RFU 6), and Sangguniang Panlungsod Chairman on Agriculture Ricardo Regalia, Jr. at the Mount Ballo Hall in Barangay Camingawan.

The organizing and training team of the corn program sees to it that the program is participatory, location-specific, and research-oriented, said NSCA Research and Development Services Director Mae Flor Posadas.

Agencies actively involved in the training are NSCA, Kabankalan City Government, Office of the Provincial Agriculturist, DA-RFU 6, Agricultural Training Institute, Western Visayas Agriculture and Resources Research and Development Consortium, and private companies that donated seeds and fertilizers. (OPA-FITS-Negros/PIA/cad) [top]

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