Rep. Duterte pushing for passage of Magna Carta for young farmers | Inquirer News

Rep. Duterte pushing for passage of Magna Carta for young farmers

/ 10:17 PM December 15, 2023

MANILA, Philippines — A lawmaker is pushing for the passage of the proposed Magna Carta for Young Farmers which seeks to create programs encouraging the youth to take up agriculture and incentivize participation in the said industry amid concerns about the workforce getting older.

In a statement on Friday, Davao City 1st District Representative Paolo Duterte said that his House Bill No. 9329 would provide young farmers equal access to education and training through scholarships with state universities and colleges (SUCs) and by giving them land to till.

According to Duterte, if enacted, the bill would also ensure “technical training, access to seeds and farm inputs, and assistance on product and market linkage and development.”


“With Filipino farmers getting older with each passing day, our country may soon face a critical shortage of food producers in the next 12 years. We need fresh, young minds to revitalize our agriculture sector and turn it into a main economic growth driver,” Duterte said.


“Considering the consistent high poverty incidence rates in the agricultural sector, the shift out of the sector will continue and food security will be endangered if recuperation of the sector will not be given utmost priority. In addition to showing appreciation to the invaluable contribution of the agricultural sector, incentivizing the sector’s members, particularly the young generation, will ensure the perpetuity of the sector,” he added.

Duterte cited a 2020 study from the University of the Philippines (UP) showing that the average age of Filipino farmers is 53 years old.

According to the paper titled “Aging Filipino Rice Farmers and Their Aspirations for Their Children” produced by UP Los Baños professor Florencia Palis, it appears that farmers do not want the same hard life for their children, hence steering them away from farming to other industries.

Under the bill, a young farmer is defined as an “individual whose primary source of income comes from agriculture, with an age range of 15-35 years old.”

Aside from incentives and programs, young farmers are entitled to the following benefits if the bill is passed:

  • Equal access to farm technologies and mechanization
  • Ensure innovation, development, and proliferation of young farmer-friendly technologies and mechanization agricultural production and processing
  • Equal access to formal sources of credit and capital including forms of clean loans and Mortgage, Redemption, and Insurance (MRI)
  • Equitable share to the produce of farms and aquatic resources

“Young farmers’ access to information regarding policies, programs, projects, subsidies, and funding outlays that affect them, shall be ensured,” Section 10 of the bill read.


Currently at the House, a Magna Carta for Agricultural Workers has been filed, but it does not focus on young students who are taking up agriculture programs, or young people engaged in farming.  However, the same proposal also tackles the issue of food security and the possible impact of not giving farmers enough help.


Philippines is running out of farmers

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TAGS: farmer, Magna Carta, Paolo Duterte

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