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A total of P51.7-million worth of interventions were distributed by the Department of Agriculture (DA) Region IV-CALABARZON to Silang and Tagaytay City, Cavite; and Cabuyao City, Laguna farmers who were affected by the Taal Volcano eruption, held on June 3, 2020.

As part of the DA Quick Response Fund, interventions including the provision of high-value crops planting materials (i.e., banana, calamansi, and coffee seedlings) and other production inputs (i.e., plant growth enhancer, agricultural lime, and seedling trays) were given to farmer-beneficiaries to help them revive their livelihoods.

According to Regional Director Arnel V. de Mesa, the Department’s production support services are among its various initiatives to ensure and sustain food production and availability, and food accessibility and affordability, with or without challenges, especially the threat of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“As the importance of agriculture is realized more than ever, let us continue doing our best to help prevent shortages and keep our local food production going,” Director de Mesa said, emphasizing the role of farmers, even ordinary citizens, in intensifying the agricultural sector in the region.

Respective local government officials of the said areas showed their support in the distribution activity.

Some of the farmer-beneficiaries expressed their gratitude to DA CALABARZON and their local government units through the city and/or municipal agriculture offices for the interventions they received.

“Lubos po ang aming pasasalamat sa DA, sa pangunguna ni Engr. Arnel de Mesa, dahil sa mga ayudang patuloy naming natatanggap. Damang-dama po namin ang aming importansya bilang mga magsasaka kaya lalo kaming namo-motivate na palaguin ang larangan ng agrikultura rito sa aming lugar. Asahan po ninyo ang aming commitment,” Mr. Juanito “Jojo” Andal, Cabuyao City vegetable farmer, shared.

Director de Mesa also assured that the Department is always ready to provide technical and financial assistance and informed everyone that the national government has allotted a P66-billion stimulus fund to increase the country’s food production as well as to survive. ● (ARC, DA-RAFIS)