P439-M worth of farm machines distributed in Leyte

Published October 28, 2021, 1:21 PM

by Madelaine B. Miraflor

The Philippine Center for Postharvest Development and Mechanization (PHilMech) has distributed farm machines worth P439.8 million in Leyte, benefitting 131 qualified farmers’ cooperatives and associations (FCAs) from 38 municipalities and cities of the province.

The P439.8-million worth of machines include four-wheel tractors, hand tractors, floating tillers, PTO-driven disc plow/harrow, precision rice seeder, walk-behind type rice transplanter, riding type rice transplanter, rice reaper, rice combine harvester, recirculating dryer, single pass rice mill, and destoner.

In total, the massive distribution will benefit 20,436 Waray farmer-members coming from the 38 munipalities and cities of Leyte including Alangalang, Palo, Babatngon, Tanauan, Sta. Fe, San Miguel, Tacloban City, Tolosa, Burauen, Dagami, Dulag, Julita, Mayorga, Pastrana, Tabontabon, Barugo, Capoocan, Carigara, Jaro, La Paz, MacArthur, Leyte, San Isidro, Tabango, Villaba, Ormoc City, Matag-ob, Kananga, Merida, Palompon, Abuyog, Baybay City, Javier, Hindang, Bato, Hilongos, Inopacan, and Matalom.

Ormoc City Mayor Richard Gomez, being the host city of the farm distribution ceremony, expressed his gratitude to PHilMech and the Department of Agriculture for their efforts to help boost rice mechanization in the province.

Ormoc City Mayor Richard Gomez inspects some of the farm machines distributed to qualified farmers’ cooperatives and associations (FCAs)

The farm machines distributed to the 131 FCAs in Leyte were procured under the 2021 allocation and the excess funds from the competitive biddings of the 2019 and 2020 allocations under the Rice Competitiveness Enhancement Fund (RCEF)-Mechanization Program.

To recall, PhilMech is mandated to execute the government’s rice mechanization program, which is set to receive annual funding of P5 billion from RCEF, the collection of rice import tariff.

RCEF is the Philippine government’s compromise to local rice farmers after allowing unlimited rice importation into the country through the implementation of the Rice Tariffication Law (RTL).