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PIA Press Release

Annual Gawad-Saka search on for outstanding achievers in agriculture, fisheries

by Rebecca G. Cadavos

MAASIN CITY (10 October) -- To give recognition for exemplary performance of Filipino farmers and fishermen throughout the country, the Department of Agriculture will pay tribute through the Annual Gawad Saka Search for Outstanding Achievers in Agriculture and Fisheries, the Office of the Provincial Agriculturist (OPAG) representative Aeolie Bernardo reported during a meeting held recently here.

Bernardo said that the recognition helps OPAG in determining and assessing the capability of the farmers especially with the influx of technologies now available in the midst. It also helps determine the response of the farmers to different existing agri-development programs of the government, she added.

The Gawad Saka 2006 search for different categories which focused on farming and fishing components such as Outstanding Farm Farmer, Young Farmer and Fisherfolk, Small Farmer and Fisherfolk Organization, High Value Commercial Crop Farmer/Processor, Coconut Farmer, Women’s Orgnaization, Young Farmer Organization, Small/Large Animal Raisers, Farm Family, RAFC/MAFC organization and Agricultural Scientist.

Bernardo further said that the search will document the respective management and cultural practices of the farmers and aims to contribute to the promotion of the long term sustainability, profitability and improvement of the living condition of the same. The awardees will serve as models to other farmers, she disclosed.

The search is in close coordination with the local government units (LGUs), hence their inevitable support is needed, Bernardo further pronounced during the meeting with the Provincial Agricultural and Fishery Council (PAFC) members. The deadline for the submission of entries was set last October 6 for the provincial level, she said.

It was learned that the Philippines is predominantly an agricultural country which 70% of Filipinos who live in the rural areas are dependent on agriculture as their main source of livelihood. The Filipino farmers have been referred to as the “backbone of the nation”, the focus of our economic recovery and the indispensable partner in the national venture. The government gives priority to the development of agriculture in order to maximize its contribution to the national economy. (PIA) [top]

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