DA leads workshop for Corn AEWs; program updates bared
Finding ways to strategize the implementation of programs, projects and activities of the Corn Banner Program this 2018 and the succeeding year, the Department of Agriculture-Regional Field Office I spearheaded the CY 2017 Assessment and CY 2018 Planning Workshop at the Venus Park View Hotel, Baguio City on March 20-22, 2018.
An activity aimed to update and familiarize the Municipal/City Agriculturist, Corn Coordinators and Report Officers of the Local Government Units (LGUs) on the latest programs and projects under the Corn Banner Program, the three-day workshop was the first of the two batches of workshop conducted by the DA, participated in by the LGUs of Ilocos Norte and Ilocos Sur. The second batch for LGUs of La Union and Pangasinan is scheduled on April 17-19, 2018 at the same venue.
In her message during the Opening Program, Ms. Josephine Cabanban, the Regional Corn Coordinator underscored the importance of implementing the targeted activities this year in support to corn production in the region because of the value it provides to the corn industry as a whole.
With region 1 as one of the major corn-producing regions in the country, and having produced the best quality corn grain among the 15 regions, Ms. Cabanban encouraged the AEWs to aggressively campaign the DA’s programs and projects intended for the corn growers especially on the conduct of corn model farms highlighting the planting of flint corn.
Flint corn is also known as the white corn that can be used as raw material in making corn cereal and corn starch. This variety of corn is distinguished by its hard outer shell and kernel and identified as one of the best alternative for rice.
The DA in tandem with the Local Government Units intend to plant 50 hectares of flint corn in the region in coordination with the farmer association members who are willing to become a cooperator of the project and a recipient of the various farm machineries and equipment distributed by the DA recently. DA will provide the seeds as planting materials including some inputs such as fertilizer, soil ameliorants and pest control.
To date, DA has validated the Caoayan-Santa area in the province of Ilocos Sur as the site of the model farm having been evaluated to be suitable for flint corn production.
Meanwhile, to complete the updating of programs and projects under the Corn Banner Program, the Philippine Crop Insurance Corporation (PCIC) represented by Ms. Mercy Pascua discussed the guidelines of availing insurance programs for the corn farmers and livestock raisers.
Mr. Hilario Esperanza, Weather Specialist from the Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical Astronomical Services Administration (PAG-ASA) - Northern Luzon talked about the Climate Prediction and Forecasting for the 3rd Quarter of 2018 to 2019 giving salient information as to when is the best time to plant and what crops suited for the predicted weather situation.
The assessment and planning workshop is a quarterly activity of the DA-RFO I Corn Banner Program attended by the AEWs in the region to discuss matters, issues and concerns relative to the Corn Banner Program implementation. This activity also serves as an avenue to determine other program interventions leading to a better corn production in the region.