Step up R&D on rice farming, DOST tells state scientists
The Department of Science and Technology called for state scientists to ramp up research and development activities that were more accessible to farmers to support rice security in the country.
“Whether the cost that we have invested have generated the desired benefits, we still have to see that these are adapted on a wider scale with the goal of reaching more rice and rice farming communities nationwide towards achieving a rice secure Philippines,” Science Secretary Fortunato T. dela Peña said in a statement.
Speaking to staff of the Philippine Rice Research Institute last week, Dela Peña cited the outputs of rice R&D and the industry’s role in helping the country’s rice sector.
“In a country where rice is a staple food, nothing compares for an ordinary citizen than to be assured of having an affordable, accessible, high-quality, and nutritious rice at all times,” he said.
Dela Peña was referring to technologies developed under the Rice Industry Strategic S&T Program, which supports efforts to achieve self-sufficiency in rice production by 2020.
The program is a partnership among government agencies PhilRice, Philippine Center for Postharvest Development and Mechanization (PhilMech), Philippine Council for Agriculture, Aquatic and Natural Resources Research and Development (PCCARD), Metal Industry Research and Development Center and the University of the Philippines Los Baños (UPLB).
Among these technologies is the use of certified seeds, bio-stimulants and elicitors, and efficient use of fertilizers and water were targeted to increase productivity by 10 percent while reducing production cost by 5 percent.
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