ILOILO CITY — To address labor scarcity during land preparation, crop establishment and harvesting, the Department of Agriculture (DA) Region 6 has allocated a total of Php17.840 million worth of farm machineries intended for Farm Service Provider (FSP) region wide.
DA 6 Director Larry P. Nacionales said that the region being one of the rice granaries of our country also experienced shortage of farm laborers.
He said that 46 percent of rice production cost was allocated for labor.
“We are establishing FSP within a composite rice farming community were scarcity of labor is continually experienced every cropping season,” he added.
Nacionales stressed that existing active farmers’ group like irrigators association, farmers association and cooperatives with at least 50 hectares rice area, in good standing for the past three years and has minimal farm machineries can become an FSP.
The association will be provided with rice reaper and thresher or combine harvester depending on the terrain of their farmlands and four-wheel drive tractors.
Other components in establishing FSP include farm machine operation and troubleshooting training (4 batches), basic accounting, simple business operation and book keeping (1 batch), project and organizational management (4 batches) and refresher course on projects and organization management for 2013 recipients (3 batches). Trainings will be conducted by the Agri-Pinoy rice program, PhilMech and Provincial Agriculture personnel.
Rene B. Famoso, FSP focal person, said that these farm machineries will help lessen asynchronous planting which is mostly associated with pest and diseases outbreaks, inefficient use of irrigation and delayed harvesting.
He said these factors result to significant yield loss due to increase shattering lengthened exposure to birds and rodents and possible unfavorable weather damage.
Famoso said that eligible FSP will provide shade or warehouse for safe keeping of the machineries, formulate operating guidelines for the availment of the machineries by the member-beneficiaries and ensure project records and files for proper audit.