AGRICULTURE News Briefs - October 9, 2017

55 Garlic Importers Banned

The Department of Agriculture (DA) has blacklisted 55 garlic importers, while the Department of Justice (DOJ) is probing allegations regarding manipulation of supply and price.

Agriculture Secretary Manny Piñol said that the suspension of these firms was based on the list of the justice department and of an earlier probe held by Sen. Cynthia Villar on the alleged garlic cartel in the Senate hearing.

Recently, DA already suspended 43 importers following their failure to use sanitary and phyto-sanitary import clearances (SPS-IC) for 50,000 metric tons of garlic.

Piñol said in an earlier interview that “a garlic cartel manipulates the importation and supply of garlic, as well as its retail price.”


Davao As Chocolate Capital

To boost cacao farmers’ competitiveness, Davao City is aiming to become the first-ever chocolate capital of the country.

Davao City Mayor Sara Z. Duterte-Carpio, in her State of the City Address last month, mentioned that the project is assisted by the Department of Agriculture-Philippine Rural Development Project (DA-PRDP) by providing P9.05-M to the city’s cacao farmers.

Duterte-Carpio noted that the city is currently implementing the Cacao Production and Marketing of Dry Fermented Beans, a sub-project under the PRDP’s Investment in Rural Enterprise and Agriculture and Fisheries Productivity with the Subasta Integrated Multi-Purpose Cooperative.

DA-PRDP is a six-year national government platform for inclusive, value-chain oriented, and climate resilient agriculture and fisheries sector.


12 Tons of Chicken Meat for Marawi Soldiers 

In an effort to support the troops fighting in Marawi City, the agriculture department sent 12 metric tons of chicken meat intended for consumption of soldiers and policemen there.

The first shipment of nearly 12,000 KG of frozen dressed chicken arrived in Tagoloan, Misamis Oriental in the middle of September, said Agriculture Secretary Manuel Piñol.

This move not only helps fighting troops in Marawi but will provide additional market for broilers who suffered a drop in demand because of the recent bird-flu outbreak in Pampanga, the agriculture chief said.


Farm Mechanization

To integrate technology into the agriculture industry, the country is eyeing the overseas development assistance (ODA) from Japan in hopes of financing the modernization of farming equipment and post-harvest facilities.

In his recent visit in Japan, agriculture officials noted that “the prospects are very encouraging, with the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries of Japan and the Japan International Cooperation Agency committing to look into the mechanization needs of the Philippines.”

In hopes of improving the agriculture sector under the Duterte Administration, projects such as the Makinadong Magsasaka program, the DA trains farm workers to become equipment and machineries operators and service providers. (Complied by Ehlorra Mangahas)



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