Bicolano farmers may further benefit from PhilRice’s research and development work as it constructs new facilities to address their problems on rice production. PhilRice-Bicol

The 378-sqm laboratory and training building at PhilRice Bicol, Ligao, Albay, will showcase climate change-ready farming technologies and will be used for seed production.

“Aside from climate-smart farming technologies, this facility will also focus on seed production to cater the needs of our farmers and seed growers in the region,” said ASec. Edilberto M. De Luna, PhilRice Officer-in-charge and Director of the National Rice and Corn Programs, during the groundbreaking ceremony, 9 June.

De Luna said that despite decreasing arable land, the country’s rice production have significantly increased over the years through the adoption and adaptation of modern rice production technologies.

“This facility will help further the development and promotion of climate change-ready varieties and crop management technologies. Development of rice-based farming technologies appropriate for Bicol will form part of its key functions,” De Luna added.

Dr. Reynaldo M. Castro, PhilRice Bicol branch manager, said that the construction of the facility will bolster the rice research and development in the region specifically on varietal development for adverse environments caused by climate change.

PhilRice Bicol sits on an 8.5-hectare land with a warehouse-office building and a seed storage and production plant.

Representatives from DA-RFO 5, National Irrigation Authority (NIA), local government of Ligao, Bicol University and Research Center, agriculturists, and researchers also attended the event.

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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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