Davao City eyes organic farm, agri training center

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September 15, 2017

THE City Government of Davao eyes to develop an organic farm and agriculture training center in Malagos.

Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio, in her State of the City Address (Soca) on Thursday, September 14, said she seeks the development of an organic farm and agriculture training center that will showcase “How-to’s” and other “Do-it-Yourself” on organic farming to inspire current and future farmers.

“As the project inspires visitors to engage in farming, the center shall house the city’s own training center catering to agri-business enthusiasts as well as basic education to K-12 agriculture learners. It is envisioned to draw not only learners but agri-tourists as well, which shall showcase the abundance and vibrance of the city’s agriculture sector,” she said.

Duterte-Carpio also wants Dabawenyos to turn into urban container gardening and nurture organic produce with the Davao City Rooftop garden as model.

“The Davao City Rooftop Garden in the City Hall Annex building serves as the model set up for the urban container gardening movement to promote urban organic farming as a scheme to guarantee food and environmental safety as well as reduce expenses through application of organic fertilizers. We would like to teach people to plant even without backyards so that they may have food on hand which would mean savings to their grocery budget,” she said.

Aside from organic farming, Duterte-Carpio said as the city eyes to be a Chocolate Capital of the Philippines, the City Government is currently doing program partnerships with national agencies for the development of the city’s cacao industry.

This is to provide opportunities for small entrepreneurs, marginal farmers, upland farmers, and indigenous peoples of Davao City be globally competitive in the cacao and chocolate industry.

“We have an ongoing implementation of the Cacao Production and Marketing of Dry Fermented Beans, a sub-project under the Philippine Rural Development Project-Investment in Rural Enterprise and Agriculture and Fisheries Productivity (PRDP-IREAP) with Subasta Integrated Multi-Purpose Cooperative (SIMPC). The project has 16 cluster members from Calinan, Tugbok, Baguio, and Marilog Districts with a total of 227 recipients, which includes 97 members of the Indigenous Peoples group,” she said.

Meanwhile, Duterte-Carpio said that the city partnered with the Department of Agriculture for the distribution of 300 units of fiberglass bancas with 50 non-motorized bancas with fishing gears.

She added that the recently-concluded first Davao City Agriculture Summit underscored the benefits of having a farmer’s association to access support from the government.

Duterte-Carpio said that approximately 35 percent of the small farmers are current members of farmers association and she said that they are eyeing to double this number.

“We also committed to strengthen our farmer’s associations so they can properly comply with government support requirements,” she said. (KVC)

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