Urdaneta City, Pangasinan – Farmers of Brgy. Consolacion in Urdaneta City Pangasinan have spoken. Six of the hybrid rice seeds out of the ten varieties showcased in the Hybrid Rice Challenge were among the top choices of farmers to plant in their succeeding planting operations.

These varieties include the NSIC Rc236H of Seedworks, NSIC Rc540H of SL-Agritech Corp, NSIC Rc404H and NSIC Rc456H of the LongPing Tropical Rice, NSIC Rc666H of Lead Agri and NSIC Rc490H of TAO Seeds.

A documentation of the Harvest Festival held on March 15-16, 2022 in Urdaneta City, Pangasinan was undertaken by the Regional Agriculture and Fisheries Information Section (RAFIS) of DA-RFO I featuring the 10.2 hectare hybrid rice production area tapped to carry out the project dubbed as Hybrid Rice Challenge.

Said project was spearheaded by the Rice Banner Program of DA-RFO I, in partnership with ten (10) private seed companies and the Local Government Unit of Urdaneta City, Pangasinan. This is in line with the DA’s massive promotion on the use of hybrid rice seeds to pump up rice productivity in the region.

The field day was attended by DA-Pangasinan Research and Experiment Center (PREC) chief Dr. Ma. Remedios Pajatin representing Regional Executive Director Nestor D. Domenden; Ms. Gemma Rosario, the Provincial Techno-demo Coordinator of the Provincial Agriculture Office of Pangasinan; together with the 18 farmer-cooperators, agricultural extension workers of Urdaneta and representatives of the private seed companies.

The project aimed at providing farmers an avenue to select the highest yielding hybrid rice varieties that they could adopt while learning the best production technologies and practices from the private seed companies and local extension workers in the area. It has opened way for farmers to see for themselves the best characteristics and attributes of the seeds that has been showcased through the Hybrid Rice Challenge.

Of the ten hybrid rice seed varieties showcased in the Field Day, Mr. Ramilo Jacaban, one of the guest-farmers, selected SL8-H 19 as a promising variety which he plans to adopt in the next cropping season based on the standing crop and agronomic characteristics that he observed during the preferential analysis conducted in the event.

The preferential analysis is one way for the project facilitators to determine the preferred hybrid rice varieties of the farmers where farmers cast their votes using the paper ballots indicating the quantitative preference score for each variety as well as the list of agronomic characteristics for all the showcased varieties.

Based on the result of the preferential analysis conducted by Ms. Leonora F. Baoing, Project Leader of the Hybrid Rice Challenge in Pangasinan showed that the NSIC Rc236H of Seedworks, NSIC Rc540H of SL-Agritech Corp, NSIC Rc404H and NSIC Rc456H of the LongPing Tropical Rice, NSIC Rc666H of Lead Agri and NSIC Rc490H of TAO Seeds were among the seed varieties most preferred by the 96 farmer attendees during the harvest festival.

Owing to the good standing of the crop including the number of productive tillers and filled spikelets counted in their observations, these varieties are the most adoptable in the area and were selected by farmers to use in their production.

Meanwhile, analysis on the ranking of the highest yielding hybrid rice variety is on-going as farmer-cooperators are still doing the actual field harvesting.

The harvest festival in Brgy. Consolacion is one of two project sites in Pangasinan along with the project site in Brgy. Balangobong, Binalonan Pangasinan that conducted its field day on March 10-11, 2022.##

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