AGUSAN DEL SUR, August 14, 2020– Amid the height of the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19), the Department of Agriculture (DA) – Region 13, through the Special Area for Agricultural Development (SAAD) Program, distributed 880 upgraded native chickens worth Php 440,000.00 to a farmer´s association in Barangay Muritula, San Luis.
The Muritula USAD Farmers’ Association (80 members) obtained 11 chickens each, complete with feeds and vitamins, as part of the FY 2020 Native Chicken Production Project amounting to Php 3.42 million.
According to association president Santos Almonicar Escalisas, native chickens are intended to be raised at home, which proves to be advantageous given that chickens raised in backyards require less investment and cost of feeds, but with a rapid return on investment.
He also expressed gratitude for the provision that he deemed as a side project for his members. “We are grateful to DA – SAAD Region 13 for these native chickens. Aside from tending to our abaca plantation and our weekly banana exports, we now have an additional, manageable project. We are more than excited because we get to raise the chickens on our own, in our very own backyards,” Escalisas said.
The association, which has grown from 60 members in 2019 to 80 in 2020, is also a recipient of the SAAD-funded Abaca Production Project in 2019 with inputs, such as abaca plantlets, fertilizers, pesticides, carabaos, and machinery and equipment worth to Php 2.46 million.
DA Regional Executive Director Abel James I. Monteagudo, in a statement, assured that the Department is one with its beneficiaries in alleviating poverty and in attaining food security in the region.
“DA-Region 13, through the SAAD Program, lives on with its mission to help address poverty in Agusan del Sur and Surigao del Sur. We recognize the needs of our partners, and, in turn, commit to provide what they need to generate income and also produce food for the region. With the pandemic becoming more threatening, our farmers need our support more than ever,” Director Monteagudo added.
The native chicken production is a component of the Php 9.4 million worth of interventions SAAD has allotted for 2020 in Region 13 to continue establishing income-generating projects to 34 farmers’ associations in Agusan del Sur (10) and Surigao del Sur (24). The interventions include other agricultural inputs, animals, and relevant Information, Education and Communication (IEC) materials to be distributed before the year ends. ###
Writer: Mark Angelo Pineda, Information Officer- DA SAAD Region 13
Copy editor: Natalianne Marie Delos Reyes, Public Relations and Communications Officer