SRO seminarPhilRice Agusan branch director shared some of his reflections and experiences in building a branch station during the annual SRO seminar series as part of PhilRice’s 32nd anniversary celebration, November 6.

As guest speaker of the said event, branch director Abner T. Montecalvo who served PhilRice since 1995 said, “Government service is sometimes frustrating, but it is truly rewarding when you realize that it is a rare privilege to serve the people.”

Montecalvo said with pride that the multiple best station awardee is built through the bayanihan system.

He also emphasized that his staff and free flowing water are the station’s most important assets.

Since its establishment in August 1990, the station has developed in terms of infrastructures, partnerships, and programs. The station has also made significant impacts on the use of  high quality seeds, number of seed growers, farmers’ yield, and adoption of technologies.

PhilRice Agusan researchers have done massive work on pest and nutrient management. Research on Metarhizium anisopliae, a biocontrol agent that attacks rice black bug, and zinc deficiency are among the station’s major contributions to rice research in the Philippines.

The 37-hectare station caters to the needs of regions 10, 11, and CARAGA, and serves farmers from 14 provinces.

The said seminar is named after the Institute’s first Executive Director, Santiago R. Obien. Montecalvo highly recognized SRO’s role in the development of the said station.

“This outstanding station was established because of him. I consider him as a visionary leader,” Montecalvo concluded.


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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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Philippine Rice Research Institute