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SCoPSA gaining popularity among corn farmers

By Loraine D. Cerillo - Project Development Officer II
March 09, 2016

(From Left to Right) Regional Technical Director Orlando Lorenzana (Region II), Ms. Nancy de Sagun (BSWM), Assistant Director Sonia Salguero (BSWM), Engr. Samuel Contreras (BSWM) and Mr. Dominciano Ramos (BSWM) joined by the participants and representatives from the DA's Regional Field Offices, Agricultural Training Institute (ATI), Bureau of Plant Industry (BPI) and Private Agricultural Sectors during the National Consultative Review and Planning Workshop for Sustainable Corn Production in Sloping Areas (SCoPSA) held at the BSWM Convention Hall on February 9-10, 2016.
Based on the initial result of the project implementation of Sustainable Corn Production in Sloping Areas (SCoPSA), farmers and Local Government Units (LGUs) are seen to be highly engaged in establishing more new sites and community based techno-demo farms that can benefit almost 600,000 families in the country relying to corn as their main source of livelihood.

Results are manifested by the numerous requests coming from the LGUs seeking assistance to conduct technical briefings and capacity trainings that is more than twice the target for 2015.

Based on reports of the Bureau of Soils and Water Management (BSWM) as the implementing agency of the program, 1,200 corn farmers have already given assistance and consultations that strengthened partnership among various stakeholders engaged in corn production and the government from April to December 2015 in the provinces of Quirino, Iloilo, Capiz, Nueva Vizcaya, Albay and Bukidnon.

In 2013, the Department of Agriculture instructed the BSWM in close coordination with DA-RFOs to provide Techno-Demo Farms to address the issues concerning improper soil and water conservation management and other human-induced crop production practices in sloping areas, particularly, upland fields that are not supposed to be planted with corn to protect landscapes.

Presently, SCoPSa is one of the Department of Agriculture's soil conservation and climate change adaptation measures through the coverage of corn areas vulnerable to soil erosion in different locations of the country.

The project is implemented by establishing a techno-demo farm showcasing easily adoptable and socially acceptable soil and water conservation technologies which are focused on soil erosion control and gully stabilization to improve soil fertility.

Furthermore, to enhance the productivity level of corn production and extend the promotion of sustainable land use management, a two-day Consultative Review and Planning Workshop for SCoPSA was carried out by the BSWM led by Assistant Director Sonia M. Salguero at the BSWM Convention Hall. The said workshop was attended by the DA's attached agencies, DA-Regional Field Offices and Crop Life Philippines representatives.

During the island-wide consultation, it was proposed that additional community-based sites shall be established for more opportunities that can be provided and extended to upland corn farmers to increase their income while promoting sustainable land use management and good agricultural practices.

"Doing this is not just promoting the corn but making sure that the production in these particular fields is sustainabl," Salguero said.

Presently, SCoPSA has already established 15 techno-demo farms in Regions I, II, V and VI and aims to establish 12 more sites for 2016 in Cagayan Valley, Bicol Region and Northern Mindanao that will have a total of 76.8 hectares of techno-demo farms.

"As the Philippines remains self-sufficient in corn supply, to sustain its availability and production sufficiency is up to our supervision and continuous action," Salguero added.

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