The agriculture department has been asked to establish mobile soil laboratories in the municipalities of Narra, Brooke’s Point, and Roxas to respond to soil degradation threats.

Board Member Ryan Maminta said that the mobile laboratories from the Department of Agriculture (DA) are needed as they also face threat due to weather disturbances and human activities that can affect food security.

Maminta said that the National Soil Health Program (NSHP) was recently approved by President Rodrigo Duterte which aims to rejuvenate the unhealthy and degraded soils of the country.

He said that the program has an allocation of P523 million.

“The establishment of mobile soil laboratories is important to ensure that farms can still be served even though the same are far from established DA- Bureau of Soils and Water Management (DA-BSWM) provincial and regional boundaries and that of modern mobile soil laboratories,” he said in an approved resolution.

Maminta said that included in the component of the NSHP are monitoring of soil health, partnership with relevant agencies, improve soil analysis, and development of manuals on the use of physical and biological parameters as indicator of soil health.

The same resolution also passed requesting Governor Jose Alvarez through Provincial Agriculturist Romy Cabungcal to implement Provincial Soil Health Program (PSHP) for food security and economic benefits of the province.

Maminta said that by creating PSHP, the province can institutionalize and operationalize the provincial soil analysis of all agricultural farmlands for an accurate and timely determination of soil fertility.

“[This] will serve as a local counterpart of the nationwide soil analysis, and soil rejuvenation is expected to help the local farmers and food producers,” he said.