All about rice: Farmers exchange tips and techniques on boosting production and running a processing center
Libmanan, Camarines Sur - Separated by more than 500 kilometers of land, two farming organizations have converged in the fields of barangay Bagadion to share knowledge and experiences they have gained from decades of rice cultivation.
To the visitors from Guimba, Nueva Ecija, represented by Cooperative Enterprise for True Economic Reform (CENTER), it is their opportunity to learn more about how to operate a rice processing center from the Libmanan farmers as they have owned such a facility for ten years.
To the rice farmers of Libmanan, under the Saradit sa Kristyanong Komunidad Farmers Corporation (SKKFC), the visitors from Nueva Ecija could teach them modern and better ways to boost productivity. After all, the province is the rice granary of the country.
Addressing the challenges in the rice value chain
During the learning visit, SKKFC, headed by Fr. Granwell Pitapit, toured the CENTER members, while teaching them the technical aspects of running the rice mill. He also expressed their willingness to help the cooperative compute pricing.
Meanwhile, CENTER suggested several rice farming practices to SKK during their visit to the farms. These include tips on synchronous farming, proper fertilization, and proper seed selection.
“Marami sa aming binigay na suhestyon ay hindi natin matutunan ngayong araw. Matututunan ang mga ito sa pamamagitan ng tuloy-tuloy na pag-aaral,” CENTER Chairman Cata Obinario said.
Made possible by the Peace and Equity Foundation (PEF), the encounter of the two organizations last April paved the way for a mutual commitment to continue the exchange and help each other in addressing gaps in their respective areas.
“To move our farmers out of poverty, we need to help them gain access to irrigation, access to finance and credit, and support for their clustering initiatives. Hopefully, we create models that can be replicated and helped our farmers,” PEF Chair Senen Bacani said.
Aside from Bacani, PEF Executive Director Roberto Calingo and Deputy Executive Director Cauchie Garcia were also present during the learning exchange.