Farmers and government officials, from the BARMM, nearby regions, and from the central offices in Manila, were amazed by the performance of rice with application of Norinano Plus as it yielded 11.5 tons/ha and gave an expected net income of at least Php86,000.

These were based on the crop cut result and cost and return analysis presented during the Grand Rice Harvest Festival conducted by the MAFAR in collaboration with the ThaiPhil Advance AgriTech Corporation (TPAAC) held in Barangay Poblacion, Datu Paglas, Maguindanao on October 8, 2020.

According to Tong A. Abas, Research Chief and Rice and Seed Focal Person, the activity was to conclude the established 50-hectare inbred rice model farm in the village showcasing the high-yielding variety NSIC Rc222 that was managed under three treatments.

In the presentation of cost and return analysis, Abdul Nasseef S. Ulong, BARMMIARC Center Manager and OIC for Agriculture Services, said the three treatments were 100% synthetic-based, 100% Norinano, and 50:50 (Norinano+Synthetic) of which the one with plain Norinano plant supplement excelled with 167% return of investment.

Jorgen Abellera, Technical and Marketing Manager of TPAAC, said Norinano plus is 100% organic and certified Halal foliar fertilizer made from high quality Japanese seaweed. It is water soluble and in micro sizes that is easily and directly absorbed by the plants providing them with needed minerals and supplements.

“Norinano, with its nano size is packed in sachets so it gives the farmers ease in transportation as they only need to bring packs and not sacks of fertilizers”, said Rico D. Montecillo, Vice President for General Operations of TPAAC.

He added that a farmer would need four packs of Norinano that can be bought at Php850 each totaling to only Php3,400 per hectare compared with using synthetic fertilizer that costs at least Php5000 for a five-bag application.

MAFAR Minister Dr Mohammad S. Yacob congratulated the farmers for their bountiful rice harvest that he identified as one of the ways in combating poverty in the region and part of implementing the marching order of BARMM Chief Minister Ahod B. Ebrahim. He called the farmers heroes who serve as partners of the government in uplifting the economy.
Minister Yacob assured the farmers that the ministry shall always be with the farmers and will assist them in facing and resolving the challenges in their farming activities.

Dr Sailila E. Abdula, Assistant Secretary (Asec) for BARMM, served as the guest of honor and speaker of the grand rice harvest festival. Representing DA Secretary Dr William D. Dar, Abdula gave importance on ensuring the competitiveness of the farmers, empowering them to employ effective technologies such as using high quality seeds of recommended variety and proper water management.

For bigger market and increased income, Dr Abdula encouraged the group of farmers to practice farm consolidation.
Hon. Mayor Abubakar P. Paglas recognized farming as the main source of livelihood in Datu Paglas. “Our place used to be a war zone but as peace reigned and people have engaged in farming, it became an economic zone”, Mayor Paglas said.

Open Forum was carried out to give way for the farmers to voice out their concerns and challenges in farming and get appropriate solutions or recommendations from the officials.

The activity was graced by Director Eric Devinagracia of the Philipppine Council for Agriculture and Fisheries (PCAF), Legal Officer IV Atty. Jamil Adrian Khalil S. Matalam of DA, DA-RFO-XI Research Chief Melanie A. Provido, Assistant to Minister Yacob for Overall Operations Engr. Ismail A. Guiamel, NSQCS-BARM Chief Omara M. Kempa, PSA-Maguindanao Head Engr. Akan G. Tula, officials from the BPDA, NIA, PCIC, LGU officials, MACF chairmen, research associates, and MAFAR municipal officers (MMOs) from Maguindanao.