BUTUAN CITY – Agriculture Secretary William Dar has urged farmers to go into hybrid rice farming and farm modernization to survive the obtaining Covid-19 pandemic.
At the ceremonial harvesting of different hybrid rice varieties in a 100-hectare DA demonstration farm in Barabgay Lemon here, which highlighted the recent 11th National Rice Technology Forum (NRTF), Dar said farm modernization could serve as a key to surviving the pandemic.
“This activity (NRTF) aims to show you the available types of machinery for efficient farming as this is the time to modernize and adapt proper technologies and equipment to enable the agriculture sector to survive the pandemic,” he told the farmers.
Dar said the NRTF also seeks to lay out the government’s different strategies to enhance local rice production. He also recognized the success of farmers who ventured into hybrid rice farming, and who now expect to harvest up to eight metric tons of palay per hectare.
In a statement, DA-13 executive director Abel James Monteagudo said they have intensified the campaign for the wider adoption of hybrid rice technology among the local farmers in Caraga, in support of the national goal of rice self-sufficiency.
DA-13 data show the Caraga region has 108,850 hectares of land devoted to rice farming, 53,206 of which are irrigated; 51,373 are rain-fed, and 4,273 are upland.