Firm vows to help promote tobacco use vs farm, fishpond pests | Inquirer News

Firm vows to help promote tobacco use vs farm, fishpond pests

/ 10:38 PM January 11, 2014

TOBACCO growers see hope in uses for tobacco other than for the manufacture of cigarettes. Government scientists and a private firm are supporting tobacco use as organic fertilizers and pesticides. LEONCIO BALBIN/INQUIRER NORTHERN LUZON

A tobacco company based in Bulacan province said it would promote the use of tobacco dust as organic fertilizer and pesticide to help at least three million tobacco farmers and their families earn more income.

“We are going to help the National Tobacco Administration (NTA) promote the use of tobacco dust by our millions of fishermen all over the country,” said Oscar P. Barrientos, executive vice president of Mighty Corp., an all-Filipino firm manufacturing cigarettes in Bulacan.


“This means an exponential increase in the purchase of tobacco dust,” Barrientos said in a statement.


He said Mighty Corp. saw two benefits in its plan to promote tobacco dust. “We are helping both tobacco farmers increase their yield and fishermen increase their catch,” said Barrientos.

Barrientos said the NTA was promoting the use of tobacco dust as an organic fertilizer that acts as molluscicide to control the increase of the population of snails and other predators in fishponds.

He said Mighty Corp. sought to increase farmer income by buying 10 million tobacco leaves from local sources.

“We will be happy to offer better prices to tobacco farmers and are willing to tie up with the Department of Agriculture and the National Tobacco Administration to cement our partnership with the farmers,” he added.

Tobacco Dust Plus (TDP) is commercially manufactured by the NTA in a plant in Sto. Tomas, La Union province. When the leaves are redried and pulverized in a plant, specks of dust from the dried tobacco leaves usually fall off, creating tobacco dust.

It serves as a fertilizer to promote the growth of “lablab,” a natural fish food, and as a soil conditioner. It is used by fishermen in the preparation or sterilization of fishponds before the stocking of fingerlings.


The effectivity of TDP has been proven by studies conducted by a team from the Southeast Asian Fisheries Development Center in Tigbauan town, Iloilo province, under Dr. Joebert D. Toledo.

In his statement, Barrientos said Mighty Corp. had already bought 5 million kilograms of tobacco leaves from farmers last year. This year, the firm plans to increase the volume by 100 percent to 10 million kg of tobacco leaves, which the firm will buy from farmers in Ilocos Norte, Cagayan Valley and other parts of the country.

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Barrientos said Mighty Corp. had a long term plan to further improve its market share and help hundreds of thousands of tobacco industry workers.

TAGS: pest, pesticide, Tobacco

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