‘BRIEFING AND CONSULTATION ON FAW’ KICKS OFF IN THE TOWN WITH SWEETEST BANANA IN ASIA

Almost fifty farmers in Amai Manabilang, then Bumbaran (first sunrise in Maranao) Lanao del Sur, were able to sharpen their knowledge and skills in corn farming and in proper identification and management of Fall Armyworm (FAW) through the Briefing and Consultation on FAW Infestation in Corn, conducted on June 23-24, 2020 in Barangay Punud, here.

The activity was attended by interested and receptive farmers from the six barangays of the town namely Punud, Ranao Ibaning, Balatin, Comara, Salam, and Pagalamatan and are officers and members of the Land Owners Producers Cooperative, Punud Bumbaran Agriculture Cooperative, and Ranao Ibaning Indigenous People’s Association.

Hon. Mayor Jamal E. Manabilang attended the briefing and said Amai Manabilang is now classified 2nd class from then 6th class and is basically an agricultural municipality and has been recognized as the town with the sweetest Cavendish banana. He expressed his gratitude and appreciation to the MAFAR and to Minister Yacob for the stanch support to his farmer-constituents by initially giving them 1,500 bags of hybrid corn seeds and following it up with the conduct of the briefing and consultation. He called for unity, increased productivity, and self-reliance, among the farmers and enjoin them to practice their learning for if not, they will be to no avail.

The briefing was highlighted by the in-depth lecture on corn production technologies from significant considerations, land preparation, planting, water management, integrated fertilizer and pest management, harvesting, and marketing shared by the resource speaker Akmad A. Abdullah, MAFAR-BARMM Corn Program Focal Person. He also tackled the topic on proper identification and management of FAW aimed at empowering the farmers if ever their crops are infested by the army of insects.

When asked on their pressing issues in their agricultural production, the farmers reiterated their request for farm-to-market roads as they are really affected by the difficult and costly transportation of their products. They also informed the officials that the reasons why they prefer white corn include affordability and marketability as the traders buy them even at higher moisture content (MC) compared with yellow corn that requires 14% MC.

According to Salembai A. Abdullah, MAFAR-BARMM ICTS OIC-Chief and Training Officer, the conduct of the activity was in response to the sincere request of MAO Casad Ayo-on aimed at helping the farmers improve their knowledge and learn effective technologies in corn farming being their major livelihood. Abdullah said the conduct of the activity was funded under the 2019 Corn Program of the Department of Agriculture. It is directly implemented in the community level as per directive from the MAFAR Minister.

The two-day briefing and consultation, was also attended by Datu Alexander U. Dimaporo, Municipal Treasurer and President of the Treasurers’ League of the Philippines, SB Chairperson Cory Desimon, Punud Brgy. Chairperson Cadidia Umpar, Agricultural Technologist Nasiba Candidato, and members of the Management Team from MAFAR-BARMM Corn Program Assistant Fahmi U. Acob, Video and Lay-out Artist Embran H. Alim, Camera Man Mentingan A. Lipoles, and Ali Kasim, who all served as facilitators.

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