Piñol to tap old gadget for new farm methods | Inquirer News

Piñol to tap old gadget for new farm methods

/ 12:03 AM June 12, 2016

SCIENCE CITY OF MUÑOZ—The incoming secretary of agriculture plans to tap one of the oldest gadgets in the world to introduce the newest technologies that could help Filipino farmers improve their yield—radio sets.

Emmanuel Piñol, named agriculture secretary by President-elect Rodrigo Duterte, said he might revive a radio program, called “Farmers’ School on Air,” to spread news about new farming technologies where they would be useful—in the country’s farms.

Piñol made the statement after conferring with officials of the Philippine Rice Research Institute (PhilRice), the Philippine Center for Postharvest and Mechanization (PhilMech), the Philippine Carabao Center (PCC) and the Small Ruminant Center in the science community here.


“There are many advancements in agricultural technology but they are not trickling down to the farmers,” said Piñol.


“This is because technology transfer is not given much impetus,” he said.

He said he would ask radio stations nationwide to air the farming information program every morning.

“It will be an interactive program as the farmers can refer their problems and the agencies concerned will answer them,” he said.

Piñol said technology could help bail out agriculture and the farmers “from their lamentable situation.”

“Our agriculture is down with a negative 0.4 percent growth performance. Our farmers, who are saddled with debts because of the prolonged El Niño [dry spell] and the powerful typhoons before it, are having a hard time to recover,” he said.

His visit here was part of his “biyaheng bukid” (farm visits) “to feel and see for myself the situation on the ground before assuming my post.”


According to Piñol, there was “much poverty in the farming and fisheries sectors.”

One key policy that would be adopted when Duterte assumes office in July was the scrapping of irrigation service fees, he said.

Piñol said he had already discussed this with officials of the National Irrigation Administration (NIA).

He said he was finalizing an agriculture road map which would include new areas for production.

He said the plan included the planting of 600,000 coconut trees, inter-cropped with cacao and coffee, and high value crops in rice farming areas that might be supported by shallow well pumps.

Your subscription could not be saved. Please try again.
Your subscription has been successful.

Subscribe to our daily newsletter

By providing an email address. I agree to the Terms of Use and acknowledge that I have read the Privacy Policy.

“Food production should not simply be for production of agricultural products but also for poverty alleviation. The approach is family-based to help bring up the farmers’ families beyond the poverty threshold level,” he said.

TAGS: Agriculture, farming, radio program

© Copyright 1997-2024 INQUIRER.net | All Rights Reserved

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By continuing, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. To find out more, please click this link.