Farmers Forum held in Tuga, Tabuk to empower agri sector

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TABUK CITY, Kalinga – Concerned offices of the city government held today a Farmers’ Forum at Tuga Barangay Hall to inform farmers from barangays Tuga, New Tanglag, Gobgob, Masablang, Lanna, and Cabaritan of various programs and services for the agricultural sector and to hear issues and concerns besetting the sector directly from farmers themselves.

This is the first in a series of farmers’ forums that will be held every Tuesdays and Thursdays starting this week until next month covering all 43 barangays of the city. It is facilitated by the Office for the City Agricultural Services (OFCAS), City Veterinary Services Office (CVSO), and the City Cooperative Development Office (CCEDO).

A prominent advice to farmers at the forum is to organize and form cooperatives to access government grants, programs, and services to help them grow their yield and gain profits.

Farmers organizations are the primary beneficiaries of the mechanization program under the Rice Competitiveness Enhancement Fund (RCEF) wherein millions worth of free farm machineries is given to organizations to help lower their production costs.

Further, the CCEDO helps cooperatives grow, through programs like the Cooperative Assistance for Rural Enhancement (CARE) program, under which a grant of Php 100,000 is given to qualified cooperatives to help them through their first five years, and the Coop Saranay program where big, more established cooperatives mentor and provide technical assistance to small, new cooperatives.

“Ti city government mamati nga iti cooperatives nagdakkel ti maitulong na ti members because this is a business organization owned by the members nga mangususar ti serbisyo,” Mayor Darwin Estrañero, in his message said.

“Dakkel metlang ti epekto na nu ada ti cooperatives tayo iti bawat lugar tapnu makatulong tayo met ti job creation [and] economic growth,” he added.

The mayor gave assurances that the issues and concerns of farmers that will be aired in the forum will be addressed by the city government, recognizing that the agricultural sector remains the main economic driver of the city.

“Ti panggep ti farming, talaga nga dakkel ti concern tayo dituy, nangnangruna na dituy Tabuk ta ti Tabuk ket agricultural city nga makunkuna. Kayat na nga sauwen agdependar tayo iti farming ti panagbiyag,” the mayor said.

“Nu anya man dagituy masapul, nu kaya met a ti city government nga addressan amin dagituy ket addressan tayo,” he further stated. By Iryll Sicnao

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