DOST to continue developing agricultural extension modalities to benefit farmers

Published October 1, 2021, 11:50 AM

by Charissa Luci-Atienza 

The Department of Science and Technology–Philippine Council for Agriculture, Aquatic and Natural Resources Research and Development (DOST-PCAARRD) vowed to continue developing agricultural extension modalities for a more effective and sustainable strategy to use research and development (R&D) results.

(MANILA BULLETIN FILE PHOTO)

The commitment was made during the first International Videoconference on “Best Practices and Approaches on Agricultural Extension Modalities” held via Cisco Webex and Facebook Live on Aug. 26.

The videoconference was initiated by the DOST-PCAARRD in collaboration with the Food and Fertilizer Technology Center for the Asian and Pacific Region (FFTC) and the National Training Institute for Farmers’ Organization (NTIFO).

“There is no blueprint or one-size-fits-all in the provision of extension services to the farmers. The participation of the government, be it national and local, non-government organizations, private sector, women, and the youth is vital to continuously improve and sustain any agricultural extension modality,” DOST-PCAARRD Executive Director Reynaldo V. Ebora said in his message during the global videoconference.

The DOST-PCAARRD and FFTC have been in partnership with FFTC in implementing different S&T-related activities either held in the Philippines or other partner countries for over 38 years.

FFTC Director Su-San Chang attributed the ever-changing reforms in extension systems to the “changes in farming types and techniques, farmers’ educational level, national agricultural policy, and the growing awareness on global issues such as environment, technologies or trade.”

DOST-PCAARRD’s Technology Transfer and Promotion Division (TTPD) Director Noel A. Catibog cited the successful implementation of the agency’s Techno Gabay Program (TGP), an extension modality that was implemented in the early 2000s.

The program seeks to bring science-based information and technology services to the end-users in the agri-aqua sector and is designed to enhance access to knowledge and technologies by extension agents, farmers, and entrepreneurs, he said.

In 2009, former President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo signed an executive order mandating the adoption of the TGP.

Keynoting the videoconference, DOST Secretary Fortunato “Boy” T. de la Peña cited the critical role of agriculture in achieving the targets of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

He said the agricultural innovation system should be improved, and cited the need to continue innovating, particularly in the delivery of services to farmers and fisherfolk, and other stakeholders.

The videoconference zeroed in on the extension modalities focusing on on-farm productivity, improved marketing, and increase in income; extension modalities focusing on increasing resiliency through disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation; and extension modalities focusing on rural development especially for economically and/or socially disadvantaged areas.

“The virtual conference served as a venue for exchanging knowledge, experiences, and lessons learned in implementing different agricultural extension modalities in eight participating countries such as Thailand, Taiwan, Vietnam, Indonesia, Malaysia, Japan, Korea, and the Philippines,” the DOST-PCAARRD said.

 
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