The Department of Agriculture in Western Visayas is pushing the public to buy rice from local farmers, its regional director, Remelyn Recoter, said yesterday.
This week, the DA Region 6 celebrated the National Rice Awareness Month, with the theme, “Buy Local. Eat Local. Support Our Rice Farmers”.
Recoter said the celebration coincided with the present situation of the local rice industry after the passage of the Rice Tariffication Law.
“The government has lifted the importation ban to reduce the market price of rice. DA has aided rice farmers, especially those who have a farm one-hectare or less,” she said.
She said the agency is currently distributing the Survival and Recovery assistance to more than 5,000 farmer-beneficiaries in the region.
“Each beneficiary received a P15,000 zero-interest loan and it is payable in eight years,” Recoter said.
Moreover, the P10 billion tariff generated yearly will be given back to the farmers through the Rice Competitiveness Enhancement Fund, she said.
Of the amount, P5 billion will be allotted for rice farm machinery and equipment, P3 billion to rice seed development, propagation and promotion, P1 billion to expanded rice credit assistance, and P1 billion to rice extension service.
To address the complaints of the farmers on the removal of the import cap, the DA has also required local government units to buy palay, or unhusked rice, directly from local farmers.*
back to top