DA-PhilRice’s first Director (1986-2000), Dr. Santiago R. Obien (SRO), expresses his confidence that the Institute will keep on finding ways to better serve the Filipino rice farmers.

DA-PhilRice summed up its 35 years of rice research for development (R4D) and service to Filipino farmers as it celebrated its 35th anniversary on Nov. 4-6, 2020, with the theme, “Kaalaman, Kakayahan, Kaunlaran.”

R4D products such as seeds, machines, diagnostic tools, and rice-based foods/drinks were exhibited. Impact of training, integrated pest management, and knowledge products on a rice-secure Philippines were also highlighted.

Extension modalities used since the Institute’s beginning from face-to-face encounters to VHS tapes, and high-tech information and communications technologies were displayed.

Online thanksgiving, moral enrichment program, and Dangal ng PhilRice awards program were parts of the subdued celebration.

The annual SRO Seminar Series on Research Management and Institution-Building was also held with Dr. Fernando A. Bernardo, renowned expert in rice research, former DA-PhilRice Trustee, and first president of the Visayas State University, as the resource person. Dr. Obien, now 85, was the guest of honor for the entire anniversary celebration.

“My fervent wish is for the Institute to sustain the high quality of its science in the midst of change, and our protracted battle against the COVID-19 virus. May it remain relevant, empowered, and compelling in its service to our rice farmers – whether they are among our aging farming population, or the younger and enterprising ones. May it embrace change, and co-create the new, or the next, or the better normal,” Executive Director John C. de Leon said. DA-PhilRice was established on Nov. 5, 1985 through Executive Order 1061.

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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