November 22, 2019 – In support to the annual celebration of the National Rice Awareness Month every November, DA Ilocos once again spearheaded a 5K Fun Run activity and this time, included the Rice MasterChef challenge in response to this year’s theme of “Buy local. Eat local. Support our Rice Farmers.”
Rice farmers in the country has been greatly affected by the impacts of the implementation of the Rice Tariffication law, the inevitable dropping of price of palay, onslaught of typhoons, among others causing tremendous downfall on their income.
Being one with the farmers, RTD for Operations Erlinda F. Manipon noted the noble role of farmers in the Filipino society.
“Our farmers are the one who produce what we eat in our daily lives, however, they are still the one who are in the bottom. So, we should also do our small share as consumers. We should share and promote our sense of ‘Riceponsibility,’” she said.
The 5K runners competed for the top three prizes for both men & women category worth P3,500, P2,500 and P2,000. All runners got certificates, free singlet and breakfast.
For the men category winners were Mr. Jenmark Daprosa as the first placer followed by Mr. Mark Lester Quigao, 2nd placer, and Mr. Michael Castro third placer.
For the women category, Ms. Amie Tacla bagged the 1st place award, followed by Ms. Evelyn Gavina as 2nd placer and Ms. Cathy Pastor as 3rd placer. Other than the cash award, winners also received certificate of recognition.
For the Rice MasterChef Challenge, DA-RFO I employees were grouped into five teams, each team is composed of five members from different division offices. The participants presented their best cookeries in the main and side dish categories highlighting the use of brown rice or rice-corn mix in their dishes.
For the first place in the main dish category, the ‘Pan Fried Bangus Spanish Rice’ of Team ILIARC & Research Division was chosen by the judges, followed by the ‘Lu-ki ni INREC’ of Team INREC - second, ‘Corn-mix Arroz Valenciana’ of Team FOD - third, and ‘Seafood Paella” of Team AFD - fourth.
On the other hand, side dish category was again dominated by Team ILIARC & Research Division having the first place with their ‘Fried Tofu with Spicy Oyster Sauce Glaze’ dish. Other dishes that won in this category were the ‘Corn Mix Latik’ of Team FOD as second placer, ‘Corn Pudding’ of Team INREC as third placer, and ‘Rice Cake with Caramel’ of the Team AFD as fourth placer.
In each category, winners brought home cash prizes worth Php 5,000 for the first place, Php 3,750 for the second place, Php 3,000 for the third place, Php 2,500 for the fourth place. The board of judges were spearheaded by DA-RFO 1 RTD for Operations Ms. Erlinda F. Manipon and RTD for Research & Development Dr. Jovita M. Datuin.
The competition not only promoted patronage of local rice but fostered teamwork as well among the competing teams.