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Modernising Agriculture and Fisheries in the Philippines

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The Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) and the Department of Agriculture (DA) have recently organised events aimed at advancing the agriculture and fisheries sectors in the Philippines. These initiatives are designed to enhance the livelihoods of fisherfolk and farmers through the adoption of modern technologies and comprehensive support programmes.

BFAR’s Masaganang Pangisdaan Tungo sa Maunlad na Ekonomiya (Prosperous Fishing Towards a Developed Economy) trained 70 fishermen on the latest fishing technologies and informed them about the government’s services and policy programmes related to the fishing industry.

Stakeholders from various government agencies, including the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA), Cooperative Development Authority (CDA), Department of Science and Technology (DOST), Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), and Department of Agriculture (DA), participated in the forum. These agencies play crucial roles in supporting the fisheries sector through training, cooperative support, technological advancements, trade assistance, and overall development.

The forum aimed not only to enhance the livelihoods of fisherfolk but also to provide a venue for all stakeholders in the fisheries sector to connect and collaborate. The participants were encouraged to ask questions to deepen their understanding of policies aimed at modernising and improving the fishing industry.

The interactive sessions covered a wide range of topics, including community-based hatcheries, tilapia production, freshwater shrimp farming, common violations in freshwater areas, loan programmes, insurance for the fisheries sector, and farm registration.

The Department of Agriculture organised the 2nd National Agriculture and Fisheries Technology Exhibition (NAFTE), focusing on the latest technologies developed by partner research institutions. The event brought together 46 exhibitors showcasing innovative products and solutions for the agriculture and fisheries sectors.

Under the theme “Makabago at Angkop na Teknolohiya: Tulong sa Patuloy na Pag-unlad ng Magsasakat at Mangingisda Para sa Bagong Pilipinas” (Modern and Appropriate Technology: Aid for the Continuous Development of Farmers and Fisherfolk for a New Philippines), the exhibition featured technologies aimed at enhancing productivity, sustainability, and profitability.

Sessions included discussions on local government-led agricultural initiatives, successful technology-driven adlay production, best practices in technology transfer, and partnerships in the health and wellness industry.

Senator Mark Villar, the event’s keynote speaker, underscored the importance of the fisheries sector to the Philippine economy. He noted that the agricultural sector contributes 8.9% to the GDP, with fisheries accounting for 1.3% and providing 1.6 million jobs annually. Villar emphasised the need for continued support and investment in these sectors to drive development.

Jose Apollo Pacamalan, Regional Executive Director of DA-10, praised the collaborative efforts of stakeholders in promoting innovation. He emphasised the event’s role in empowering farmers and fisherfolk through the adoption of cutting-edge technologies, thereby enhancing economic opportunities and sustainability in the sector.

The local government of Cagayan de Oro, represented by Mayor Rolando Uy, showcased collaborative efforts with various agencies and institutions to drive progress in agriculture and fisheries. Exhibitors, including Susan Galua from J&R Mahinog Cacao Producers Group and Marife Suaybaguio from Visayas State University, expressed their excitement about the exhibition, noting its significance in promoting and improving their products and technologies.

These initiatives by BFAR and DA reflect the Philippine government’s commitment to advancing the agriculture and fisheries sectors through modernisation and comprehensive support. By leveraging modern technologies, fostering collaboration among stakeholders, and promoting sustainable practices, the Philippines aims to enhance the livelihoods of its fisherfolk and farmers, driving significant socio-economic benefits and ensuring food security and welfare for the nation.


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