COTABATO CITY — An agriculture official in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) on Wednesday said there is no shortage of rice in the region.
This is because the dry spell that hit rice and corn producing areas in the region from February to May this year has not caused any shortage in supply of grains owing to the 60 percent increase in production during the two preceding cropping seasons.
Farmers in the region, in fact, have had sufficient supply surplus from their harvests prior to the dry spell, Makmod Mending, Jr., ARMM agriculture secretary, said.
Mending said farmers did not feel any long-term effect of the four-month drought.
“There was no shortage of rice and corn supplies in the region as a result of that drought,” Mending told reporters.
He cited his office carried out mitigating measures during the dry months resulting in stable supply of palay.
“Credit should go to the farmers and DAF’s field personnel for having cooperated well in implementing measures aimed at preventing any undue effect of the drought,” he said.
The atmosphere of peace brought about by the GPH and Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) peace process gave an opportunity for farmers to focus on farming thus an increased production this year, Mending said.
Mending said the tranquility made farmers till their land without any disruptions or threats while DA technicians had all the opportunity to assist farmers become more productive.
According to Kadiguia Rakman Abdullah, DAF’s chief information officer, the DA intervention also made the farmers productive with many of them, including mothers, who used to be unproductive, became busy with “Gulayan sa Barangay” projects.
She supported Mending’s assertion that the prevailing peace and order situation in remote communities made the DA technicians visit more areas to introduce modern farming techniques.