OCCIDENTAL MINDORO, April 11, 2023 – To complete the Traditional Rice Production Project FY2022, the Department of Agriculture – Special Area for Agricultural Development Program (DA-SAAD) MIMAROPA awarded a single pass mobile rice mill, amounting to Php 926,666.00 to Talayob Mangyan Farmers Association (TaMaFA) in Magsaysay, Occidental Mindoro.
The turnover was held in Barangay Nicolos, Sitio Talayob, the farmers’ association’s (FA) community, on March 8, 2023, and was attended by several FA members, Municipal Agriculturist Office of Magsaysay, and Area Coordinator, Oliver Cosme.
Situated in the remote upland areas of Sitio Talayob, almost 20 kilometers away from the nearest town center, the TaMaFA farmers association comprises 45 indigenous Mangyan members engaged in traditional rice farming, as their primary livelihood. The FA is tilling a combined estimated land area of 30 hectares.
TaMaFa was formed and included as beneficiary in 2020 and was initially awarded upland rice seeds under the FY 2020 funding, with the goal of contributing to food sufficiency in the community. TaMaFa’s farmland is rainfed and considered an ancestral domain, wherein TaMaFa practices customary norms in terms of tilling are being utilized to prevent exhaustion of the land.
To aid in their post-harvest activity, one (1) unit of single-pass mobile rice mill was awarded to the association, aimed at providing immediate milling access not only to the beneficiaries but also to their community.
TaMaFA Chairperson Louie Limos expressed his appreciation for the program and for all personnel working behind it. He shared that the association will be able to reduce their postharvest expenses and losses as they will no longer need to haul their produce to the nearest milling center.
TaMaFa’s gross harvest every cropping cycle often records between 50 to 80 metric tons every wet season (May to June), enough to feed their community which has an estimated total of over 270 residents. The acquisition of postharvest equipment is expected to reduce their postharvest expenses by 60%.###
Writer: Anne Gasmena, DA-SAAD MIMAROPA Associate Project Officer