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The fulfillment of Palawan’s food security goal is dependent on increasing support to rural-based organizations and agricultural production, according to a top agricultural official in the provincial government.

Provincial agriculturist Dr. Romeo Cabungcal told Palawan News on Tuesday that this was the most important takeaway from the two-day Agri-Talakayan 2022 that the provincial government hosted on June 13-14 with interested parties and stakeholders as part of the Baragatan Festival.

The chief of the Office of the Provincial Agriculturist (OPA) said the discussion centered on addressing deep concerns and issues facing today’s farmers and fisherfolks.

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Investing in rural-based organizations, including youth and women, will be helpful to strengthen the capabilities of the locals in meeting food security, he explained.

Local agriculture plans will also be directed to the development of high-value crops, vegetable production, rice, and organic farming.

“Bibigyan natin ng tugon, una ‘yong ating programa sa provincial government ‘yong aming corn and rice enhancement for sufficiency. So ma-attain natin ang food security. We will be looking into the development of high-value crops, and vegetable production that will support ang ating food requirement, always in the home program,” he said.

Cabungcal emphasized that the Agri-Talakayan also exerted pressure on the LGUs and municipal agriculture officers to develop the agricultural department.

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The participating stakeholders such as local agriculture officers, agricultural extension workers, national agencies, and rural-based organizations, also expressed their commitment by signing a manifesto to support initiatives of the province toward achieving food security.

“Laging sinasabi sa atin, comes the Mandanas ruling and nasa challenge na ng local government unit how to implement the basic functions or basic services na dini-devolve sa local government unit,” he said.

OPA stated that Agri-Talakayan was a means of bolstering the Province-led Agriculture and Fisheries Extension Systems (PAFES), which is one of the agriculture department’s strategies for ensuring service delivery to farmers and fishermen, especially in rural areas.

“Doon na naka-anchor lahat ‘yan, how the production will be productive and at the same time, it will profitable doon sa ating farmers and fisherfolks. Kasi we want to equate natin na kapag may mataas na production, mataas din ang kita ng ating mga magsasaka at mangingisda,” he said.

Previously, the DA MIMAROPA led the signing of the understanding agreement with Palawan’s LGUs, the academe, the private sector, and non-government organizations (NGOs) to improve service delivery and technical and marketing assistance to farmers and fisherfolk in January.

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is one of the senior reporters of Palawan News. She covers agriculture, business, and different feature stories. Her interests are collecting empty bottles, aesthetic earrings, and anything that is color yellow.