Posts Tagged ‘Republic Act 10068’

‘Don’t touch proposed budget for organic agri’ – group asks lawmakers

BUDGET activists are throwing their support behind the proposed National Expenditure Program (NEP) submitted by Malacanang through the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) for the DA’s 2012 budget for organic agriculture which they said will help boost organic farming in the Philippines.

Roland Cabigas, managing director of the La Liga Policy Institute (La Liga) and a convenor of Go Organic! Philippines said as far as the push for organic farming is concerned, the DA’s proposed budget for 2012 is laudable.

Under the NEP for 2012, the DA’s budget this year of P37.4 billion will increase to almost P50 billion, P927.2 million of which is for the promotion of organic agriculture in the Philippines.

The amount, Cabigas said, will greatly boost organic farming in the Philippines which promotes environment-friendly food production practices which the country needs to invest in to help cut its carbon footprint and help address the challenge of climate change.

Such budget, he said, should be used to provide various support services, training, research and development, marketing and packaging assistance, including subsidy to farmers who will shift to sustainable organic and ecological agriculture to boost the country’s organic industry.

Cabigas added that the increase in budget also means additional  resources  for  a comprehensive effort to educate and push a for shift  to organic lifestyle among urban consumers  which buys  the bulk of agricultural commodities that come from  the rural areas.

Resource mobilization and the efficient utilization of government resources for agricultural development is part of the overall campaign to achieve food and staple sufficiency within the term of Pres. Aquino.

“We appeal to our honorable members of Congress not to touch the proposed budget for the DA’s organic agriculture program and support organic farming by approving the new budget line item as proposed in the NEP for 2012,” Cabigas said.

Cabigas lauded the DA led by Sec. Proceso Alcala, an organic farming practitioner himself, for being faithful to his commitment to support the push to have a separate budget line item exclusively for organic agriculture as reflected in the NEP 2012.

La Liga, which acts as the convening organization of the Alternative Budget Initiative – Environment Cluster (ABI-Envi Cluster), believes that organic farming promotes sustainable, organic and ecological agriculture consistent with the AgriPinoy program of Pres. Aquino.

As part of its budget advocacy, La Liga which took part in the crafting of the implementing rules and regulation of Republic Act 10068 otherwise known as the Organic Agriculture Act of 2010 pushed for the provision mandating the DA to allocate at least 2 percent of its annual budget exclusively for the implementation of organic agriculture programs.

The campaign for the shift to sustainable organic and ecological agriculture and its funding is consistent with La Liga’s call for a more climate sensitive 2012 budget which calls for increased public investment for environment-friendly way of doing agriculture.

A development policy research and advocacy nongovernment organization, La Liga is aggressively promoting organic farming in the Philippines.  In 2009, La Liga and the Philippine Rural Reconstruction Movement (PRRM) led a network of citizens’ groups, academic institutions, local government units and the private sector under the banner Go Organic! Philippines in implementing the Organic FIELDS Support Program (OFSP).

The program popularized organic farming in six provinces in Luzon, wherein 600 farmers who completed a season’s long training, a major component of the program, are now practicing and teaching other farmers how to go organic.

Through its partner-LGUs under the One Pangasinan Alliance of LGUs (LGUs), La Liga was able to institutionalize local funding in support of organic farming, particularly in Western Pangasinan.

In Pangasinan, La Liga is implementing the Organikong Palayan – Pangasinan in partnership with the DA Regional Field Unit 1 and the local government units of Alaminos City, Bani, Burgos and Dasol.as part of the DA’s overall strategy of attaining food and staple sufficiency within the term of Pres. Aquino.

The program takes off from the various “organic” initiatives of the participating LGUs with the hope of encouraging more farmers to shift to sustainable organic and ecological agricultural model and veer away from the conventional agricultural model that is highly dependent on often harmful petroleum-based chemical fertilizers and pesticides.

Under Organikong Palayan – Pangasinan, a total of 280 farmers will also undergo season-long training on organic farming of rice in eight learning farms, two learning farms for each of the project areas, to be put up for the purpose.

Cabigas stressed that Organic Agriculture Act of 2010, Republic Act 10068 recognizes the urgency of shifting to a sustainable organic and ecological agriculture model to increase rice production and productivity in the long run, boost farmers’ income, promote better health for farmers and consumers and increase soil fertility by arresting the degradation of the environment.

Pangasinan mayors vow funding support for organic agriculture program

FOUR local chief executives in Pangasinan vowed to institutionalize funding in support of the shift to sustainable organic and ecological food production model in the province.

Alaminos Mayor City Hernani A. Braganza, Bani Mayor Marcelo Navarro Burgos Mayor Alberto Guiang and Dasol Mayor Noel Nacar vowed to ask local legislators in their respective city and municipalities to integrate funds for organic farming in the annual investment plan for 2012 .

Alaminos, Bani, Burgos and Dasol are project partners in the Organikong Palayan – Pangasinan of the Department of Agriculture – Regional Field Unit 1 being implemented by the La Liga Policy Institute (La Liga).

Roland Cabigas, managing director of La Liga lauded the four local chief executives in taking the lead in promoting sustainable organic and ecological agriculture in their respective localities, noting that the failed promises of the prevailing agricultural model that is heavily dependent on agro-chemicals necessitates such commitment and support.

 “Crucial to all these initiatives to promote organic farming is the need to integrate funding support in the annual investment plans of individual LGUs,” he said.

Organikong Palayan – Pangasinan is consistent with the food staple sufficiency goals of the DA and Pres. Benigno Simeon C. Aquino’s Agri-Pinoy program, Cabigas said.

In Alaminos City, Braganza, said organic farming has always been a part of the city’s investment priorities.  He said organic farming offers a solution to the woes of resource-poor farmers whose income is limited by the skyrocketing cost of petroleum-based fertilizers and pesticides.

“Slowly, more and more farmers are realizing the need to shift to a more environmentally-sound food production practice and model,” he added.

Sustainable organic and ecological agriculture is consistent with the city’s 10-point agenda to boost the city’s tourism industry, which is anchored on protecting the environment and natural resources.  Alaminos is home to the Hundred Island National Park (HINP).

The same way, Navarro said going organic supports his vision of making Bani a model “Green City” by 2020.

For his part, Guiang said farmers in Burgos will greatly benefit through the season-long training component of the project, wherein organic fertilizer production forms an important part of.

“Learning how to produce their own organic fertilizer will help farmers become less dependent and more self-reliant,” he stressed.

Nacar, who is now president of the League of Mayors in Pangasinan pointed out that Dasol, whose salt industry is largely dependent on its pristine waters, requires the limited application of chemical fertilizers so as to prevent pollution, apart from making food staple production economically viable.

He urged Pangasinan’s local chief executives to initiate similar programs as a way of offering farmers alternative ways of doing business in agriculture that is safer to both food producers and consumers, and friendly to the environment.

The four Pangasinan mayors recently signed a memorandum of agreement with La Liga’s managing director expressing their commitment and support to the project.  La Liga, for its part, will also provide counterpart fund for the implementation of the project.

It will be recalled that DA Secretary Proceso J. Alcala and DA Region 1 Regional Executive Director Renato A. Maguigad last week led the launching of Organikong Palayan – Pangasinan” as part of the strategy of attaining food and staple sufficiency within the term of Pres. Aquino.

The program takes off from the various “organic” initiatives of the participating LGUs with the hope of encouraging more farmers to go organic.

A total of 280 farmers will also undergo season-long training on organic farming of rice in eight learning farms, two learning farms for each of the project areas, to be put up for the purpose.

La Liga, which is aggressively promoting organic farming in the Philippines, said Organic Agriculture Act of 2010, Republic Act 10068 recognizes the urgency of shifting to a sustainable organic and ecological agriculture model, to increase rice production and productivity, boost farmers’ income, promote better health for farmers and consumers and increase soil fertility by arresting the degradation of the environment.

DA-LGUs-La Liga launch ‘Organikong Palayan’ in Pangasinan

The Department of Agriculture (DA) on Friday formally set in motion a one-year program to promote the shift from conventional to organic rice production models in four pilot areas in the province of Pangasinan.

DA Secretary Proceso J. Alcala and DA Region 1 OIC Regional Executive Director Renato A. Maguigad led the launching of the program dubbed “Organikong Palayan – Pangasinan” during simple rites in Alaminos City.

The project will be implemented by the La Liga Policy Institute (La Liga) in partnership with the local government units of Alaminos City and the municipalities of Burgos, Bani and Dasol.

Local chief executives of the four LGUs namely Mayor Hernani A. Braganza, Mayor Marcelo Navarro (Bani), Mayor Alberto Guiang (Burgos) and Mayor Noel Nacar  (Dasol) have committed to promoting sustainable, organic and ecological agriculture in their respective localities as a strategy in pursuing local economic development.

A member of Go Organic! Philippines, La Liga aggressively promotes organic farming in the Philippines.  La liga managing director Roland Cabigas said  the program is part of the DA’s strategy of attaining food and staple sufficiency within the term of Pres. Aquino.

Cabigas said the rice subsector alone employs around four million farmers and farm workers.  Land planted to rice covers approximately 40 per cent of the total land cultivated, or approximately 4 million hectares of the 10 million hectares of land devoted to food production.  However, despite its (rice) significance, the Philippines is a rice-importing country.

 “Clearly, a concerted effort to increase rice productivity is imperative. This is the challenge faced by sustainable agriculture,” Cabigas stressed.

He said different studies on agricultural productivity specifically on rice production cited numerous reasons from a plagued policy environment to dwindling public investments in agriculture as the reason for the poor performance of the rice sub sector.

“This exposes the fact that the gains and promises of rice productivity of the prevailing production model have been short lived. A shift in production methods and systems is crucial to achieving the country’s rice self-sufficiency and food security goals,” he said.

The DA secretary, during the launch, ordered the RFU 1 to ensure the timely release of the progam’s fund for various activities which aims to enhance the capacities, provide production support, and to institutionalize programs and budget for the promotion of sustainable agriculture among participating LGUs, in line with the Agri-Pinoy Program of the DA.

Braganza, a convenor of Go Organic! Philippines, said the program takes off from the various “organic” initiatives of the participating LGUs with the hope of encouraging more farmers to go organic.

Also the secretary general of the League of Cities of the Philippines (LCP), Braganza hopes that the benefits of such program on organic farming will radiate in other cities and municipalities in Pangasinan and the Ilocos Region.

La Liga expects the project to be replicated in other towns of Pangasinan and the Ilocos Region, in view of the province`s role as one of the leading agricultural commodity producers in the country.

The DA Secretary was in Alaminos City as guest of honor of the event dubbed “Farmer – Fisherfolk Assembly held at the Alaminos Sports Center, wherein the country’s food czar presided  the rolling out of  DA projects for the province of Pangasinan, one of which is the Organikong Palayan.

The DA is promoting responsible consumption and production to achieve food self-sufficiency.  Aside from the production of brown rice, it is also promoting the cultivation of white corn, sweet potato or commonly called camote, and cassava, or more popularly called balinghoy in the Visayas or kamoteng kahoy in Luzon.

 “Organikong Palayan – Pangasinan” seeks to promote organic farming as mandated by Republic Act 10068 – in this case, rice in the four pilot areas.  Through the project, proponents aim to encourage the shift to sustainable agriculture practices among farmers, mobilize support from local governments in terms of policies, programs, and promote sustainable agriculture as a key strategy for local economic development.

Through the project, farmers will be mobilized through barangay assemblies, targeting a total of 1,400 farmers, to rally support behind the DA’s sustainable, ecological agriculture initiative.

A total of 280 farmers will also undergo season-long training on organic farming of rice in eight learning farms, two learning farms for each of the project areas, to be put up for the purpose.

Alaminos, Bani, Burgos and Dasol are located in Western Pangasinan and are members of the One Pangasinan Alliance of LGUs, an economic alliance that promotes resource sharing for local economic development.

Otherwise known as the Organic Agriculture Act of 2010, Republic Act 10068 recognizes the urgency of shifting to an organic agriculture model to veer away from the excessive use of agrochemical inputs used in conventional farming systems.

Organic Agri IRR to institutionalize funding for organic agri programs, projects – La Liga

The implementing rules and regulation of Republic Act 10068 otherwise known as the Organic Agriculture Act of 2010 will institutionalize funding for the country’s organic agriculture programs and projects once effectively put in place and implemented.

This was stressed by Go Organic! Philippines convenor Roland Cabigas, who called on the approval by the congressional oversight committee on agriculture and fisheries modernization of the proposed IRR which was signed and submitted by Agriculture Secretary Proceso J. Alacala to the agriculture committees of the Philippine Senate headed by Senator Francis Pangilinan and the House of Representative led by Batangas 4th District Rep. Mark Llandro Mendoza early this month.

Cabigas, managing director of La Liga Policy Institute (La Liga) which acts as the secretariat of the Environment Cluster of the Alternative Budget Initiative said Rule 25.1 of the IRR states funds shall be allocated out of the 50 million appropriation for the promotion and development of organic fertilizer, “to support the coordination, implementation, and monitoring and evaluation, of the research, development and extension activities on the Organic Agriculture Program.”

On the other hand, Rule 25.2 states that: “The DA shall thereafter allocate the amount of at least 2% of its annual budget for the implementation of the Organic Agriculture Program.

La Liga was part of the technical working group composed of representatives from various national government line agencies led by the DA, local government units (LGUs) and citizens groups that crafted and refined the proposed IRR through nationwide consultations early this year.

“Under the proposed IRR, funding support for the promotion and development of organic agriculture becomes automatic,” Cabigas said.

He said that once approved by Congress, programs and projects geared towards the promotion and development of organic farming, will be sustained.  Such, he said, will promote the shift from conventional farming to more ecologically-sound food production practices that promotes low carbon development in agriculture.

A development policy research and advocacy nongovernment organization, La Liga has been calling for a more climate sensitive 2011 budget through increased budget allocation.  It is proposing for an additional P7.4 billion on top of Malacanang’s original budget proposal for the environment and natural resources sector of P13.1 billion, which will include the promotion and development of organic agriculture in the Philippines.

The IRR for RA 10068 is the first policy document under the Aquino administration that recognizes low carbon development path as a strategic framework in the promotion of Philippine agriculture.

Cabigas added that the IRR pushes for the promotion of organic agriculture as a framework and strategy that should guide the agricultural aspect of the new MTPDP currently being crafted by the National Economic Development Authority (NEDA).

Republic Act 10068, otherwise known as the Organic Agriculture Act of 2010, was signed into law on April 2010.

Pres. Aquino’s first 100 days

DA chief ok’s IRR for Organic Agri law; congressional ‘approval’sought

ADVOCATES of organic farming on Thursday hailed the signing of the implementing rules and regulation (IRR) for Republic Act 10068 which is expected to boost the promotion and development of ecologically-sound food production practices in the Philippines.

Roland Cabigas, a convenor of Go Organic! Philippines said the crafting of the IRR , which was signed by Agriculture Secretary Proceso Alcala, significantly marks Pres. Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino’s first 100 days in office.

The final IRR for RA 10068 has been submitted by the Department of Agriculture to the agriculture committees of the Philippine Senate headed by Senator Francis Pangilinan and the House of Representatives headed by Batangas 4th District Rep. Mark Llandro Mendoza last week.  The proposed IRR will be reviewed by the congressional oversight committee on agricultural and fisheries modernization.

Alaminos City Mayor Hernani Braganza, a convenor of Go Organic! Philippines echoed Cabigas’ sentiment, saying it is considered a key reform achievement of the Aquino administration in promoting sustainable agriculture and food self-sufficiency for the country.

Branganza, concurrently the secretary general of the League of Cities of the Philippines, pioneered local government initiative in support of organic farming through allocation of funds and resource mobilization directed towards the promotion and development of organic agriculture in Alaminos City.

The IRR for RA 10068 is the first policy document under the Aquino administration that recognizes low carbon development path as a strategic framework in the promotion of Philippine agriculture, Braganza said.

For his part, Cabigas, managing director of La Liga added that the IRR  pushes for the promotion of organic agriculture as a framework and strategy that should guide the agricultural aspect of the new Medium Term Philippine Development Plan (MTPDP) currently being crafted by the National Economic Development Authority (NEDA) for 2011-2016.

La Liga, a development policy research and advocacy nongovernment organization is a member of Go Organic! Philippines, which implemented the Organic FIELDS Support Program (OFSP) last year.  OFSP is a national program which aims to promote the shift from conventional to organic farming.

“The crafting of the IRR for RA 10068 is a clear demonstration of the new DA administration’s resolve to cause a shift from conventional farming to organic agriculture, Cabigas said.

La Liga was part of the technical working group composed of line agencies of different departments headed by DA and citizens’ groups that crafted and refined the IRR.

Republic Act 10068, otherwise known as the Organic Agriculture Act of 2010, was signed into law on April 2010.

According to Cabigas, more importantly, the IRR aims to address the perennial problem confronting progressive legislation about the absence of funding support, by allocating at least 2% of the annual DA budget for organic agriculture programs and projects.

“This will ensure the sustainable development of organic agriculture through the automatic appropriations from the DA’s annual budget certain percent for organic farming,” Cabigas said.

Further, Cabigas said the IRR provides for a transition period for the equal application of first, second and third party certification for organic agricultural produce.

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