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INM Training in rice highlights Balanced Fertilization Strategy
by Emerson Deñado - Tuesday, 23 August 2022, 06:28 PM
INM Training in rice highlights Balanced Fertilization Strategy
JARO, Leyte - “I can now help farmers with the uptrend price of the fertilizer through BFS wherein we need to practice integration of organic and inorganic fertilizers.” said Antonette Asplico, an AEW from Kawayan, Biliran, this, after completing the 5-day training on Integrated Nutrient Management (INM) with an emphasis on Balanced Fertilization Strategy in Rice Farming on June 20-24, 2022.

The Balanced Fertilization Strategy (BFS) was put forward by the Department of Agriculture to sustain crop production as the increasing prices of fertilizer still looms because of the COVID-19 pandemic, strong global demand, and higher input costs. The program is supported by the different DA attached agencies for the attainment of the OneDA Reform Agenda. Thus, the Agricultural Training Institute (ATI), being mandated to provide up-to-date extension programs and share the latest technologies in the agricultural sector aims to incorporate BFS in its activities related to rice farming.

The training on Integrated Nutrient Management (INM) with an emphasis on Balanced Fertilization Strategy in Rice Farming enabled AEWs, as the frontliners in the agricultural sector, to be equipped with the knowledge and skills of the technologies on INM and BFS that they will later disseminate to farmers to enhance the productivity, profitability, sustainability, and resource-use efficiency of rice farming in their respective localities.

The participants, mostly rice coordinators from the different municipalities in Eastern Visayas were capacitated to adopt and share the process in formulating organic fertilizers to farmers in their respective municipalities or cities. They also experienced soil sampling and soil testing using the Soil Testing Kit (STK) and even capacitated to do social media marketing in selling agricultural products online. Most of all, the concept of the Balanced Fertilization Strategy was instilled to each one. “We should practice EAT (right element, right amount, and right timing). Meaning, we need to feed our soil to give its best nutrients to the plants.” added Antonette as she recalled her learnings from the training. “I have now the knowledge and technology to re-echo it to our farmers to produce their own organic source of fertilizer in which I see that there are so many potential and available raw materials in our municipality.”

Jhonmar Anos, also a participant from Can-avid, Samar, appreciated the importance of BFS. He said that feeding plants is not the primary goal of farmers but feeding the soil as well. “In recent months, synthetic fertilizers are significantly increasing in price. By using balanced fertilization strategy, we can capacitate our clients to lessen the use of inorganic fertilizers by adopting integrated nutrient management.” he shared.

Thirty (30) participants attended the training held at Villaconzoilo Farm in Jaro, Leyte. Each submitted their action plans with hopes that BFS shall be disseminated to most parts of the region with their help as AEWS. With the knowledge, experience, and skills she gained, Antonette ended her impression with all confidence saying, “All in all, I can say to myself, and as a newly assigned Rice technician, I am now confident not just in words.”

-Bethel John SInon

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