NEGROS ORIENTAL, August 4, 2022 – To improve rice farming practices for a higher yield and income, the Department of Agriculture-Special Area for Agricultural Development (DA-SAAD) Program in Negros Oriental conducted a two-day specialized training on rice postharvest and marketing in Bal-Os, Basay, Negros Oriental from June 22 to 23, 2022.
Twenty-eight (28) active farmers of the Sitio Cabigtian Cayangcangon Tambo Colos Farmers Association (CACATACOFA) were trained on rice product marketing and post-production in order to reduce postharvest losses. Topics include insect pest management, fundamentals of harvesting and the importance of palay check, and packaging ang sorting.
Table 1. Topics discussed in postharvest and marketing training
For postharvest management, Charles Montecino, Chief Crops Division from the Office of the Provincial Agriculturist (OPA), recommended the farmers to maintain a safe storage by keeping the storage area clean and tidy to prevent the grains from rodents, insects, and micro-organisms that could damage the seeds. Drying grains uniformly within 12-24 hours of harvest is one of the ways to keep the grain safe from moisture before storing it.
Additionally, Engr. Edu Cadorna, Science Research Analyst from the Philippine Center for Postharvest Development and Mechanization (PHILMECH), and Provincial Focal Person in Negros Oriental, highlighted the importance of farm sanitation that can greatly affect the quality of the harvested grains.
Through this training, farmers are equipped with knowledge to ensure sufficient supply of quality local rice produce in the market. Looking forward, the association plans to get soil samples to identify needed nutrients through balanced fertilization to minimize the cost of production.
Since 2017, the area experienced a low production of rice because of poor selection of rice seed varieties. They practiced synchronous planting, which did not eliminate the pest as well as improper nutrient management practice. They are also unaware of harvesting management which also affected their income.
The association has been harvesting an average of 1,200 sacks of grains per crop production from their 20 ha land area, but only 75% or 780 sacks of 50kg rice bag were packed for consumption and were sold for Php 1,700.00 since the quality of the remaining harvest did not meet the local market requirements.
With this, CACATACOFA became one of the recipients of the Agricultural Equipment and Support to Rice Production Project in 2017 from the DA-SAAD with interventions delivered worth Php 1,565,460.00.
Table 2. Interventions received under the FY 2021 Agricultural Equipment and Support to Rice Production Project
Support to Upland Rice Production and Marketing
The training provided in June is part of the FY 2022 Support to Upland Rice Production and Marketing project from which they will be receiving a portable bag closer electric sewing machine, powerlon thread, and white empty sacks until the third quarter. This is to help them establish a community-based enterprise.
Table 3. Interventions under FY 2022 Support to Upland Rice Production & Marketing Project
Neil Jay C. Academia, CACATACOFA President, shared his gratitude to the program, “Daghang salamat na ang among association naka baton ug training kabahin sa pag preparar sa among basakan hantod sa pag tigom sa among humay. Kini nang langkod sa mahimo na maayong land preparation abot sa pag harvest sa amo ani, haron ma gamay ang mga usik sa among produkto ma kahimo kami sa taas na abot sa among pang-uma.”
(Thank you so much for choosing our association to be the recipient of this training. Through this, we were able to enhance our knowledge on land preparation, farm practices, and post-harvest management practices. Through good land preparation, farm waste can be controlled and we can now expect high yields from our harvests). ###
Writer: Jolina T. Daño, DA-SAAD Negros Oriental Information Officer
Randy P. Carpio, DA-SAAD Basay, Bayawan City, and Tanjay City Area Coordinator
Janaura B. Rivera, DA-SAAD Jimalalud and Vallehermoso Area Coordinator
Analiza Manaba, DA-SAAD Region 7 Operations Officer