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‘F2C2 to foster food sufficiency' - Siquijor agri officers

To establish the Farm and Fisheries Clustering and Consolidation program (F2C2) in the Province of Siquijor, the Department of Agriculture 7, through Dr. Gerry Avila, chief of Field Operations Division, held an orientation on the salient features of the program recently at Dongsan, Pulangyuta, Siquijor.

The activity was attended by the agri-extension workers from the provincial and municipal offices with 36 farmer associations and cooperatives.

The new OIC-Agricultural Program Coordinating Officer, Dr. Julius Galvan, during the briefing/orientation on F2C2 program.. (DA-PATCO Siquijor)

According to Avila, the F2C2 program aims to modify the value chain, enable consolidated farms to benefit from economies of scale, ensure better access to markets, financing, and investments for crops, livestock, and fisheries ventures and development, and accelerate the over-all growth and development of the agri-sector.

Big Brother-Small Brother active partnerships and joint ventures will be established, with Big Brother as the major provider of support and expertise in production, processing, and storage technologies and equipment, transport and logistics, and access to finance and marketing networks to small brother associations.

Under F2C2, Avila stressed the importance of adoption of modern agricultural practices and industrialization to establish empowered and competitive farm and fishing communities.

“As I have observed, Siquijor’s agri sector is very promising, one of the best in Central Visayas," said Avila.

“As compared to other provinces, yield in palay and cassava alone is very high. Palay at 4-5 mt/ha and cassava at 60-70 mt/ha pero ubos ug (low) volume because of your area,” added Avila.

However, Avila said, with the establishment of F2C2, production volume is expected to increase.

Provincial Agriculturist Emigdio Coritico says the clustering program will ensure food sufficiency in the province and pave way for the establishment of community business enterprise. (DA-PATCO Siquijor)

“Our end goal is food security, increase income and productivity, and we can only do that if we work as a group," he added.

Provincial Agriculturist Emigdio Coritico echoed Avila, saying that the clustering program will ensure food sufficiency in the province and pave the way for the establishment of community business enterprise.

Newly-elected and incumbent Gov. Jake Vincent Villa, in his message, said he has high hopes that F2C2 will bring equal access to assets, resources, and services.

“I believe in the potential of our farmers, and hopefully with this program, we can also inspire new generation of farmer entrepreneurs," he said.

With F2C2, crops and plant-based products shall conform to combined land resources and minimum product arrangements.

For rice, fruit trees and perennials, and fiber crops, the minimum requirement is 100 hectares, 75 hectares for corn and other grain crops, and 50 hectares for high value vegetable crops.

For rice commodity, Licoan Siquijor Farmer irrigators Association in Maria, Siquijor have been identified as the big brother association.

In the case of livestock production, the F2C2 program shall adopt the farm systems approach through feedmill-centered-livestock production ecosystem, agro-pasture approach, and well-delineated community growing territories or farm areas.

In the case of fisheries and aquaculture, producer communities may adopt community marine and fishery production zones or area-based production enterprises within municipal waters, community fishery fleet, and community fishpond leases.

The program shall encourage and assist the cluster’s agriculture production, processing, storage, marketing and other relevant community-based producer groups, provided that 75% of the cluster members are registered in the Registry System for Basic Sector in Agriculture.

To kickstart the F2C2 implementation in Siquijor, various trainings on financial literacy, organizational management, marketing, value orientation, and social preparation will be conducted to better prepare big brother and small brother associations for the transformation in the agri-sector.

Avila encouraged the farmer associations to avail of loan programs of the Department of Agriculture to finance mechanization and industrialization.

Moreover, he said with the high prices of fertilizers in the market, farmers should adopt balanced fertilization and Bio-N to lessen production cost. (PR)

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Rizalie Calibo

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Region 7

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