About 400,000 farmers in 57 provinces across the country had received assistance from the Rice Competitiveness Enhancement Fund-Rice Extension Services Program (RCEF-RESP) through reading materials on modern rice farming.
Circulated during seed distribution of RCEF-Seed Program, the Gabay sa Makabagong Palayan published by Philippine Rice Research Institute of the Department of Agriculture (DA-PhilRice), contains recommendations from seed germination until harvesting.
“This leaflet has become our guide. It tackles all the information that farmers need to know. It’s a great help for farmers, especially for those who are new to rice farming,” Rogel Comesario, an RCEF beneficiary from Manaoag, Pangasinan, said.
Comesario, who harvested 7t/ha in the dry season, shared that the information he obtained from the leaflet helped him achieve 1-ton increase in his yield. The Gabay sa Makabagong Pagpapalayan leaflet includes step-by-step procedure on sowing the certified inbred rice seeds, seedbed preparation, land preparation, fertilizer application, and harvesting.
Aside from the leaflet, RCEF-RESP also distributed English and Filipino copies of PalayCheck System booklet to technical workers and agriculture technicians under the training program. PalayCheck System is a dynamic rice crop management that presents the key technology and management practices as key checks.
Videos on PalayCheck System, RCEF programs, and four ways on how farmers can compete amidst the influx of imported rice were also played during technical briefings and seed distribution. The videos are also available on PhilRice TV https://www.youtube.com/user/philricetv/videos.
The distribution of information, education, and communication (IEC) materials is only one of the strategies implemented by RCEF-RESP. Training scholarships for the farmers will also be implemented to teach them skills on modern rice production and mechanization.
RCEF -Seed Program and RESP are components of Republic Act 11203 or Rice Tariffication Law, which allots P10-billion fund every year for the rice farmers. Sponsored by Sen. Cynthia Villar, RCEF is a six-year government initiative to help the farmers compete in the international rice market.
PhilRice, the government’s lead agency on rice research and development, leads the RCEF-Seed Program and assists in RESP. With eight stations across the country, its programs and projects are in line with the DA’s “Masaganang Ani, Mataas na Kita” battlecry. For more information about the Institute’s program, queries can be sent through PhilRice Text Center (0917 111 7423) or email firstname.lastname@example.org.