Agri execs eye P40-M budget for uplandsBy Tweeny M. Malinao
Cebu Daily News
A P40 million budget was sought by Cebu City agriculture officials to fund the development of upland or mountain barangays in the city next year.
During a media tour of Cebu City’s farmland areas, City Agriculture Officer Apple Layon said the amount would go to “technical operations for the benefit of the farmers.” This year’s budget was pegged at P11 million.
Layon said Cebu City upland barangays such as Tabunan and Sudlon I have two installed tramlines to deliver harvested crops to the local market. The Agricultural Tramline System cost P3.7 million with a cargo capacity of 500-600 kgs.
Part of the system is operated by the Napayran Farmers Association of Sudlon I, who were also equipped with radio transmitters. Consumers pay P.5 centavos per kg of agricultural produce for delivery.
Layon said the tramline in Sudlon I is operated manually with a travel time of “more than an hour.”
“If there’s already a battery the machine will be operating in 3 minutes,” she said. More than 30 farmers belong to the Napayran Farmers’ Association.
The city agricultural office formed about 49 farmers organizations and Layon said they are providing trainings like vermi-composting and vermi-culture.
Layon said Cebu City is 30 percent agriculture-based with barangays Sudlon I and Sudlon II mostly selling high-value vegetables such as lettuce and cucumber.
City Agriculture Coordinator Tita Tumulak, who’s assigned in barangays Sudlon I and Tabunan said the distance between the starting point of the tramline in Sudlon I is 750 meters, while it’s 850 meters in Tabunan.
City agriculture technologist Vicente Alcerto said the farmers use complete integrated farming methods and crop rotation for their fields. For his part Emelio Secretaria, the 28-year-old president of the Maraag Farmers’ Association also asked Cebu City Hall to secure land tenure and subsidy for the farmers.