Reform Secretary Rafael Mariano turns over the symbolic key for
the Balaquid post-harvest facilities to Balaquid Agrarian Reform
Cooperative Iladia Calabia as Cabucgayan Mayor Edwin Masbang
witnesses the event.
Sec. Mariano turns
over P7M PHF in Biliran
By JOSE ALSMITH L. SORIA
November 10, 2016
CABUCGAYAN, Biliran –
Agrarian Reform secretary Rafael Mariano turned over here on Saturday
P7.1-million worth of post-harvest facilities (PHF) to the Balaquid
Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries Cooperative.
But Mariano in his message
insinuated that the PHF, which was implemented under the Department of
Agrarian Reform’s (DAR’s) third phase of the Agrarian Reform
Infrastructure Support Project (ARISP-III), was not enough yet.
Though the project consists
of a 105-square meter warehouse, a 49-square meter office and a
492-square meter solar dryer, Mariano believed that the cooperative
also needs a mechanical dryer to be able to continue their operations
even on rainy days.
He also agreed with Biliran
Representative Rogelio Espina, who was also present during the said
occasion, that the cooperative likewise needs a multi-pass rice mill
so the latter could go full blast in their rice trading operations.
instructed his undersecretary for Foreign Assisted and Special
Projects Sylvia Mallari, who was with him, to think ways how the
Department could provide these to the farmers. According to him, the
country could be rice sufficient if we will help the farmers.
In acceptance, Iladia
Calabia, chairperson of the said cooperative thanked DAR and said
“malaking tulong ang proyekto na ito sa amin na pag-iimbakan at
pagbibilaran ng palay dahil karamihan sa mga magsasaka dito ay rice
farmers” (this project is of big help to us in storing and drying rice
because most of the farmers here are rice farmers).
Further, Calabia took the
opportunity to request from Mariano and Espina to provide them also a
delivery truck so they could save on rentals in the hauling of rice
aside from the mechanical dryer and rice mill that had been mentioned
earlier by the secretary and the congressman.
Meanwhile, Mayor Edwin
Masbang disclosed that in 2017 his administration will provide rice
subsidy to municipal employees and promised to tap this cooperative as
Provincial Agrarian Reform
Program Officer Renato Badilla explained that the project was funded
by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and the local
He added that this agrarian
reform community (ARC) is a recipient of various rural development
projects, which include an irrigation project that could supply water
to 60 hectares of rice fields, a 1.7 kilometers farm-to-market road
and a potable water system installed in 208 households.
Members of the said
cooperative were also trained on the Department of Agriculture’s
“Palay Check” which increased rice yield in this area, Badilla further