Gov’t initiates farm trials to boost PH soybean yield
The Department of Agriculture (DA) is carrying out a farm trial to improve the country’s meager production of soybean, an important source of oil and protein that the country imports heavily.
The agency issued general guidelines on the implementation of the soybean farm trial project, aiming to verify and adopt new or matured component technology on production and post-production of soybean in specific location.
The DA also wants to find out the best production management practices and assess new or improved soybean varieties developed by research institutions or existing varieties from other regions.
Results of technology demonstration trial will guide farmers to choose the appropriate technology for their farms and ensure compliance with industry requirements, the DA said.
The Philippines has been producing only 0.35 percent of the country’s total demand in the last five years while 99.65 percent is being imported, such as seeds, soybean meal and by-products, based on 2021 data from the Philippine Statistics Authority.
“Based on the present status, it is necessary to increase local production to meet local demand, ensure food security and to reduce dependence on importation,” the DA said.
“Farmers should be encouraged to try new and matured technologies that are applicable in their areas to increase their yield and income,” it added.
The farmer cooperator (FC) participating in this project must be in the Registry System for Basic Sectors in Agriculture.
The technology demonstration trial will be conducted at the farmer’s field. Quality and quantity tests on seeds for distribution, including the harvested seeds, will be conducted to ensure conformity with the existing and prescribed quality standards.
The DA’s Regional Field Office (RFO) will provide farm inputs such as seeds, fertilizers, fuels for irrigation (if applicable), pesticides and biological control agents to the FC.
“The FC shall return the same amount of volume of seeds to DA-RFO after harvest. The FC shall gather, store and notify DA-RFO to retrieve the same volume of seeds received,” the DA said.
The DA-RFO and the FC will present the result of the field trial to the farmers’ cooperatives and associations at a timing that should coincide with the maturity and harvest period.
The FC is not obliged to return the volume of seeds received from the agency in the event of crop failure, provided it will submit proofs within 10 working days.