The towns of Pototan and San Miguel in Iloilo, Dumalag in Capiz, Kabankalan in Negros Occidental, Sibalom in Antique and Kalibo, Aklan will each be receiving P1 million prize grant in the form of projects and incentives.
The Rice Achievers Awards, led by the Department of Agriculture (DA) through its national rice program, was initiated to encourage local government units (LGUs), irrigators’ associations (IAs) and agricultural extension workers (AEWs) to contribute their share in increasing farmers’ harvest and incomes, and subsequently attain national rice sufficiency.
Mr. Injemar Bautista, Chief-Management Support Staff, Regional Operations Group-DA-6, said that aside from the six towns, 58 AEWs in the region will also be recipients of the top rice achievers award. Five are from Negros Occidental and the rest are from Iloilo. Each will be receiving P20,000 incentive.
The awardees were chosen based on the following: incremental rice harvest and average yield per hectare over 2011 levels, increase if any over 2012 target, amount of budget devoted to rice projects and initiatives, number of farmers benefited, and degree of rice seed utilization, among other criteria.
President Benigno S. Aquino III has been invited by DA as the main guest and speaker, and to personally hand over the awards and prizes to the 2012 rice achievers, in ceremonies to be held on March 15, at the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC) in Pasay City .
The DA said that the contest will be conducted annually to give due recognition to the hard work and support extended by farmers, local leaders, and farm technicians to increase rice production. (JCM/LTP/PIA-ILOILO)