Bio-fueled dryers ready this October harvest
by L. Lopez
TABUK CITY, Kalinga (15 October) -- The Department of Agriculture (DA) vowed the release this month P12.650 million worth of support facility to the hybrid rice commercialization program of the province.
According to Provincial Agriculturist Gerry Jose said the fund will be used to finance the putting up of 23 flatbed dryers, including its components, to recipient irrigators association in various parts of the province who are engaged in hybrid rice production.
Under the project, farmer-irrigators are required to organize into clusters and that their total farm area should be planted to hybrid rice.
The facility which is patterned the organic way uses rice hull as fuel, in place of the cost-extensive commercial types which uses diesel and kerosene.
Jose said DA is making the release this time to catch-up with the harvest season this October-November wet cropping, where farmers need badly this kind of facility to dry their palay.
Earlier, DA Secretary Arthur Yap ordered the immediate release of the fund which he said is part of government's agriculture support to Kalinga's booming hybrid rice industry.
The post harvest package to hybrid rice farmers consists of warehouses equipped with bio-fueled dryers, moisture testers and canvass. The project is a grant from the Ginituang Masaganang Ani (GMA) program.
In line with the national agenda on increased rice production, President Arroyo ordered the DA to put in place more farm interventions in the countryside to boost palay production to 19.058 million metric tons by 2010 and help drive annual growth in agriculture to 5-6% over the next 3 years. (PIA-Kalinga) [top]