A season-long Farmers Field School (FFS) on Integrated Pest Management (IPM) for corn was launched at the Barangay Hall of Barangay Gabut in Badoc, Ilocos Norte on January 21, 2010. Badoc’s mayor Hon. Arlene M. Torralba and DA -INPC Provincial Chief Amador S. Sadumiano graced the occasion. This was attended by Sanguniang Bayan’s Committee on Agriculture chairman and members, municipal and barangay officials, DA-INPC staff, municipal agriculture office staff and farmers. The FFS is spearheaded by the Municipal Agriculture Office of Badoc, Ilocos Norte led by the Municipal Agriculture Officer, Mr. Bonifacio Mendoza in coordination with the provincial agriculture office and DA RFU 1.
Hon. Torralba expressed her thanks to the DA-RFU through the DA-INPC and the Provincial Agriculture Office of Ilocos Norte for the inclusion of their municipality as one of the sites of the project. She then enjoined farmer-participants to cooperate and actively participate in all activities of the program so that they can gain new knowledge and skills on how to manage corn pest. It can be noted that pests are considered as major constraints in corn production.
Mr. Sadumiano, on the other hand, also thanked Hon. Torralba, and Mr. Mendoza and staff for their support on the implementation of the program. He advised farmers who will enroll on FFS to spare a day in a week to attend to various activities on the identified training site. Their attendance to the FFS will be a great help in solving various problems that they will encounter in corn production.
According to one of the facilitators of the project, forty four farmers had signified their interest to attend the FFS. This had exceeded the target participants which was only 30. Likewise, Hon. Torralba promised to provide additional fund to support implementation of the project which was requested earlier.
The FFS known as “learning by doing approach,” is a season-long adult education course that allows farmers to discover and learn through hands-on experimentations and testing. It is carried out in a participatory learning modality for farmers to enhance their attitudes, skills and knowledge on proper corn production and pest management.
This scheme empowers farmers in decision making through participatory approach by using available basket of technology options. This encourages farmers to actively participate and their attitude, skills, and knowledge can be enhanced. This can stimulate them to discuss and offer possible solutions to problems raised based on their experiences in the field.
In this modality, Mr. Rosendo Tallon, the Provincial Corn Coordinator of DA-INPC emphasized that farmers are considered as active participants not just as passive recipient of the information. On the other hand, extension workers are not just as provider of information but rather as facilitator of the learning process. In this approach, their facilitation skills can be further enhanced.
The FFS will last for 16 weeks with only one half day session a week. A demo farm will be laid out in a 2000 square meter farmland. Three to four groups will be formed and each group will tackle and solve different field problem.(LT Pascua and LC Paraoan)
Last Updated (Thursday, 05 May 2011 02:03)