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(Photos taken by Jhoanna Santiagio – Rice Program)

Some fifty rice farmers from Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, and Rizal attended the Training Course on System of Rice Intensification (SRI) spearheaded by the Department of Agriculture Region IV-CALABARZON (DA CALABARZON) Rice Program on July 11-12, 2019 in Tanza, Cavite.

The training aims to help the participants to acquire necessary mindset and skills to apply SRI successfully in growing rice.

SRI is a climate-smart and agroecological methodology to increase the productivity of irrigated rice by changing the management of plants, soil, water and nutrients. With SRI, yields are expected to increase by 20-50% or more, while reducing inputs: seed by 90%, irrigation water by 30-50%, chemical fertilizer by 20-100%, and usually reduced need for pesticides (http://sri.ciifad.cornell.edu).

With these direct benefits, the Dr. Antonio C. Visitacion, Agriculture Program Coordinating Officer of Laguna, strongly encourages our farmers to adapt the SRI.

In coordination with the Local Government Units (LGUs) and farmer cooperators, the regional office will establish at least one Inbred and Hybrid Model Farm adapting SRI in the region.

“Ako po ay positibo sa SRI natin, kung susundin ng mga magsasaka ang protocol ng SRI ay naniniwala ako na magkakaroon ito ng magandang resulta. Ito ay napapanahon sapagkat ang mga prinsipyo nito ay tungo sa pangangalaga ng ating kalikasan lalo na ngayon na tayo ay nakakaranas ng climate change. Ang mga aral ng SRI ay solusyon din sa suliranin ng umuunting tubig. Salamat sa DA sa kanilang training, salamat sa pagmulat sa amin ng ibang pamamaraan. Salamat din sa Panginoon na siyang nanguna sa atin dito. (I am looking forward with this SRI, if we follow its protocol, I believe that it will have a positive result. It is also timely because its principles aimed towards protecting our environment especially today that we experience the adverse effects of climate change. SRI is also the solution to the water shortage predicament. Thank you DA for this training, thank you for giving other ways in producing rice. Thank God!)” Luis Gamboa, rice farmer from Ibaan, Batangas shared.

It can be recalled that a previous SRI training was also conducted for some thirty rice farmers in Quezon on June 13-14, 2019 in Lucena City, Quezon. (RFL, DA-RAFIS)