Some 120 agrarian reform beneficiaries (ARBs) in Zamboanga del Norte are now proud graduates of the System of Rice Intensification (SRI) offered by the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR).
DAR Regional Director Felix Aguhob said that the course aims to train ARBs in increasing the production of organic rice.
“SRI is an agro-ecological way of increasing the productivity of irrigated rice by changing the management of plants, soil, water and nutrients. Although it is labor intensive, the yield is double the normal rice yield,” Aguhob said.
The three-month intensive training was simultaneously conducted in the four barangays of Dipolog City namely Barangays Olingan, Punta, Turno and Gulayon.
The farmers were taught about the cropping principles by significantly reducing plant population, improving soil conditions and irrigation methods for root and plant development, and improving plant establishment methods.
“We expect our farmer-graduates to put into practice what they learned and to share this farming methods to other farmers to increase their productivity,” Aguhob said
Mayor Evelyn T. Uy on the other hand forwarded a congratulatory message to the graduates. She emphasized the importance of team work and dedication of the people behind the implementation of the Intensive Training for Organic Rice Production through SRI.
“I am grateful to DAR-ARCP2 for the initiative to introduce topics on new farming techniques with substantial learning opportunities to help our farmer beneficiairies,” Uy said.
SRI Regional Coordinator Adelberto Baniqued was cited teaching farmers on how to apply the new knowledge gained from the training on farms.
Present during the graduation rites were: PARPO II Moh. Dassan J. Adju, PARPO I Rizzel B. Villanueva, ARCP2 Deputy National Project Director Jean Fornoles, SRI National Coordinator Roberto S. Verzola,TASS Chief Alfonso A. Tan, MARO Amando G. Alama, Board Member Ronillo Lee and Engr. Kerr Porlas.
The SRI training started on December 9, 2014 to march 24, 2015 and was implemented under the DCS3 Expanded Agrarian Reform Community. (Soccorro Reambonanza)