Written by the Web Team

 

An hour for rice, for the country.

The Department of Agriculture (DA) led a one-hour national commitment ceremony to reaffirm its support to the country`s rice self-sufficiency bid and to create public awareness on the National Year of Rice2013 (NYR), Feb. 11.

At the Philippine Rice Research Institute (PhilRice), the country’s lead agency in rice research and development, hundreds of its staff allotted an hour dubbed as NYhR (NYR hour) to advocate rice.

NYR2013 is an advocacy campaign that aims to lessen rice wastage, promote the right way of eating rice for better health, and increase rice yield.  Nutritionists said rice for better health means eating brown rice and consuming ¼ cup of rice a meal.

The ceremony highlighted the recitation of Panatang Makapalay (Pledge for Rice), and writing pledges for rice on a commitment wall and sharing NYR-related infographics, photos, and posts in the social media sites.

Cora L. Abio of the DA-attached National Food Authority said the Panatang Makapalay, which she recites on Mondays during the agency’s flag ceremony, reminds her of her role in helping the country provide enough rice for the Filipinos.

“With this pledge, I became more conscious of not wasting rice and inform my children and friends why every grain counts,” she said.

Statistics show that each Filipino wastes 2 tablespoons of cooked rice every day. When not wasted, this could result in import savings as high as P6.2 billion and could feed 2.6 million hungry Filipinos in a year.

In addition, eating brown rice thrice a month would decrease rice importation  by an average of 50,000mt a year because of its higher milling recovery.

President Benigno S. Aquino III declared NYR2013 through Proclamation No. 494 signed late last year.

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Philippine Rice Research Institute (PhilRice) is a government corporate entity attached to the Department of Agriculture created through Executive Order 1061 on 5 November 1985 (as amended) to help develop high-yielding and cost-reducing technologies so farmers can produce enough rice for all Filipinos.

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