Agriculture Secretary William DAR awarded Negros Occidental and Bago City the 2019 Outstanding Rice Achievers Awards at the Panaad Covered Court in Bacolod City, today, December 8.
Negros Occidental received the award for having the highest provincial rice yield and Bago for toping the yield among cities in Western Visayas.
Bago City received P1 million along with the award.
Mirasol Coste and Carlito Incencia received the outstanding agriculture extension worker awards and Lalaine Ganate – the outstanding local farmer technician award, and P25,000 each.
Today, we recognized the big efforts of the province of Negros Occidental for reaching an average of almost 5 metric tons per hectare, from about 4.2 metric tons, which is a big increase, Dar said.
Negros Occidental Gov. Eugenio Jose Lacson said “We in Negros Occidental and Western Visayas take encouragement in the fact that we remain to be among the top palay producers in the country, and our production even increased in the first half of the year.”
Developing agriculture and uplifting the lives of farmers are among the main thrusts of his administration, Lacson said.
“We need to be reminded that agriculture is the foundation of our food security, and even the foundation of our survival,” Lacson said.
Provincial Agriculturist Japhet Masculino said Negros Occidental is among the top 10 rice-producing provinces in the country with more than 90 percent self-sufficiency expected this year.
Meanwhile, an agreement is being reached with the Department of Social Welfare and Development that rice instead of cash will be given to the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program beneficiaries in the second and fourth quarters of next year to also help the country’s farmers, Dar said.*