Their Rice Yields Increase Year After Year
By adopting recommended farm methods, farmers in Agbannawag, Rizal, Nueva Ecija are able to increase rice production every season.
Thanks to the Technical Cooperation Project 3 (TCP3) of the Philippine Rice Research Institute (PhilRice) and the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), farmers learned of recommended farm practices, resulting in significant increase in yield and income.
The project has 40 fanner-beneficiaries. They were classified either as farmer-partners (FP) or participating farmers (PF).
TCP 3 primarily aimed to compare yield and production cost of technology demonstration farms of farmer-partners (TDF-FP) with the farms of the PFs. The FPs did all the recommended methods, while the PFs were allowed to choose farm practices they would want to do.
The farm practices included varieties used, seed use, land preparation, crop establishment, synchronous planting, seeding rate, seeding age, nutrient management, and insecticide application.
“We identified the critical cropping stages as parameters for analysis of the farmers’ practice,” said Ronell Malasa of PhilRice Socioeconomics Division. “At the end of each season, we cross-analyzed these with the data on yield, income, and cost of production.”
Result of survey conducted in the dry season of 2005 and 2006 shows an increase of 1.39 tons per hectare in both TDF-FP and PF farms. Also, both groups reduced their production cost. In the TDF-FP, the reduction was 17 percent or P4,819.30, while in the PF farms it was 12 percent or P3,217.99.
The increase in yield and reduction in production cost resulted in increase in profit by 38 percent and 28 percent for the FPs and PFs, respectively. This is despite the decrease in the selling price per kilogram of paddy rice. That’s why the FPs have sustained their cropping pattern for four years now.
“More than the technologies being introduced, the study would like to focus on the process of developing location-specific technologies and document the diffusion and adoption of these technologies,” said Malasa. “In this way, the study will serve as a prototype of the rice extension program in the future.
Agbannawag is just one of the many project sites of the TCP 3. The Project is being conducted, too, in one village in Cabanatuan City and San Mariano, Nueva Ecija. And with the good result of the Project, it is expected that farmers in these areas would experience yield and income increase that farmers in Agbannawag have been enjoying.
By Myriam Garcia-Layaoen