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Some five thousand two hundred households in the city’s one 168 barangays were able to establish their own survival gardens as part of the strategies employed by the city government to help mitigate the serious negative effects of the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic to their sources of livelihood and daily sustenance.
City Veterinarian Dr. Brigit Piok disclosed that the city government, in partnership with the agriculture department, distribute some P2.75 million worth of assorted vegetable seeds and seedlings in addition to the P0.6 million city funds for the put up of survival gardens in the respective residences of the households who availed of this assistance.
Last year, the City Veterinary and Agriculture Office (CVAO) spearheaded the put up of these survival gardens to allow the concerned residents to produce vegetables for their own use at the height of the implementation of the Luzonwide lockdown to help contain the spread of the deadly virus in the city.
Aside from pioneering the establishment of survival gardens in the residences of the beneficiaries, the CVAO, in partnership with the State-run Benguet State University (BSU), implemented a science- and technology-based home and school gardening in 4 barangays and 2 schools with the use of the P0.9 million fund from the Philippine Council for Agriculture, Aquatic and Natural Resources Research and Development (PCARRD).
Together with the Highly Urbanized City Agriculture and Fisheries Council (HUCAFC), Piok disclosed that the CVAO is currently maintaining a 1,000-square meter area at the Wright Park for the propagation of assorted vegetable seedlings for distribution to residents who want to establish their survival gardens for their daily vegetable requirements.
At the same time, the CVAO also launched the 4H FARMVILLE farming and marketing through values integration, leadership and experiential learning project in barangay Irisan in partnership with the Sangguniang Kabataan (SK)
According to her, the CVAO organized the Baguio City Farmers Agriculture Cooperative and registered the same with the Cooperative Development Authority (CDA).
Moreover, in support to urban agriculture, the agriculture department provided some P5.3 million for the various livelihood projects that were implemented, such as the free-range chicken meat and egg type; mushroom production; assistance to cutflower farmers and strawberry production.
For this year, Piok said the CVAO will embark on the implementation of a P2.7 million aquaponics to be funded by the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BAFR), aside from the P1.25 million from the agriculture department for community and school gardens; another P1.3 million for strawberry production; P500,000 for mushroom production and P10 million for livestock projects on raising free range chicken, apiary and rabbit raising; P4.8 million for shared service facility on meat processing and P3.1 million for coffee processing. By Dexter A. See