Monday, October 6, 2014

P16M rice processing center to benefit residents Bacarra

By Leilanie G. Adriano
Staff reporter

Bacarra, Ilocos Norte—Residents in this balikbayan capital town of Ilocos Norte is the latest beneficiary of a new rice processing center (RPC), the Department of Agriculture is setting up all over the country to help rural farmers reduce post-harvest.

Bacarra Mayor Nicomedes dela Cruz said representatives from the DA-Regional Office based in San Fernando, La Union has already inspected the proposed site due for implementation.

“We are thankful the governor helped us in requesting for the said project which will certainly be an asset to the people of Bacarra,” Mr. Dela Cruz said.

Of the six RPCs set up in Region 1, Bacarra town is next to Piddig town of Ilocos Norte which was granted with a rice processing complex.  The Bacarra RPC is worth P16 million.

Meanwhile, the Piddig RPC is now one hundred percent completed and is ready for the upcoming rice harvest season, according to Piddig Mayor Eduardo Guillen.

This is among the 28 milling facilities strategically located in the entire Philippines the DA funded to rural farmer organizations who are trained to operate and maintain the centers.

Under the program, the government shoulders 85 percent of the cost of an RPC and the recipient the balance 15 percent. Farmer associations (FAs) or irrigation associations (IAs) can qualify to become recipients of RPC and farm machinery.

The Philippine Center for Postharvest Development and Mechanization (PhilMech) of the Department of Agriculture has distributed  more farm machinery in 2013 to boost rice self-sufficiency, including 278 mechanical driers, 652 hand tractors, 99 four-wheel tractors, 483 palay threshers, 418 rice drum seeders, and 322 rice cutters/harvesters.

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