File photo courtesy of DAR

The Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) has signed a deal with the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP) in three municipalities in Palawan to directly source produce requirements from the agency’s farmer-beneficiaries.

DAR Undersecretary for Support Services Emily O. Padilla said the BJMP requires a steady supply of food items such as rice, vegetables, root crops, and other farm produce for persons deprived of liberty (PDL) under its custody.

The partnership is being implemented under the DAR’s Enhanced Partnership Against Hunger and Poverty (EPAHP) Program which seeks to address the government’s fight against hunger and poverty in the countryside.

“The partnership is part of DAR’s six-point agenda to use the convergence of government agencies like the BJMP and private organizations to give support to the farmers,” Padilla said.

“The BJMP in the municipalities of Aborlan, Narra and the City of Puerto Princesa has more than 500 PDLs. This constitutes a combined food market that would be of great help to farmer-members of agrarian reform cooperatives,” Padilla added.

DAR Regional Director Zoraida O. Macadindang, a signatory in the partnership, said DAR will assist and empower agrarian reform beneficiaries (ARB) and their agrarian cooperatives to increase their production and engagement in agri-based and related enterprises.

“Our farmers will get a good price for their products as the BJMP coordinates directly with agrarian cooperatives for their food requirements and modes of delivery,” Macadindang said.