Picture of Joeven C. Calasagsag
New board to help farmers switch to organic way
by Joeven C. Calasagsag - Wednesday, 2 November 2011, 08:56 AM
balita.ph; October 26, 2011 10:15 pm

CEBU CITY, Oct. 26 – The newly-organized National Organic Agricultural Board (NOAB) is determined to help small farmers switch from regular farming methods to organic, a board member assured.

Rey Ramos Pedroso, a member of the NOAB, admitted that most farmers are hesitant, and often worry about capital before considering the switch to organic farming methods.

The NOAB, he said, was formed after Republic 10068 or the Philippine National Standards on Organic Agriculture Act, was enacted into law.

NOAB’s mandate is to form policies pertaining to organic farming standers, implement these standards and monitor farms to make sure they are complying.

Pedroso was keynote speaker during the recent Cebu Going Organic Conference.

He was also tasked by Agriculture Secretary Proceso Alcala to deliver a speech at the conference.

Alcala, in his speech read by Pedroso, said the NOAB will also spearhead an intensified campaign to educate farmers and consumers on the benefits of organic farming.

He said there are efforts to secure funding for the expansion of organic farms in the country.

For 2011, Alcala said the department has set aside P900 million for policy formulation and accreditation, research and development, promotion of organic farming and organic inputs like fertilizer and other programs that would improve the prospect of delivery of goods to farmers and stakeholders.

He said the Plant Congress scheduled in Manila next month should help them in their mandate, as global and local updates on organic agriculture will be discussed.

”It includes a five-year roadmap for organic agriculture in the country which he believes will help them” achieve the objectives” of RA 10068.

While he admitted the organic movement in the country is still in its “formative years”, he is optimistic this will change in the coming years.

He added that initiatives like the Going Organic conference support the growth and development of the organic movement. [(PNA) LAP/EB/bh]

Source: New board to help farmers switch to organic way
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