Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries in Iloilo Received Organic Farmers’ Achievers Awards
CARRD (Center for Agrarian Reform and Rural Development), Peoples’ Organization KASAPPI-ARB MPC, and one of its members Ms. Ofelia dela Cruz were awarded by the Philippines' Department of Agriculture Western Visayas Region as the outstanding smallholder farmer group and outstanding smallholder...
The awards were given to recognize peoples’ organization and individual farmer which have successfully adopted organic farming. In 2006, CARRD began helping the farmers in the upland communities of Salngan, Passi City, Iloilo in securing land titles of their lands covered by the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP).
After the successful transfer of titles to some of the farmers, CARRD organized the farmers into cooperative – the KASAPPI ARB MPC. Through the cooperative, CARRD assisted these farmers in enhancing their organic rice production by installing internal control system to conform to the Philippines National Standards (PNS) for organic rice production. In 2015, 38 agrarian reform beneficiaries’ members of the cooperative secured organic certification from a third party organic agriculture certifying body. This enabled the farmers to sell their produce in Metro Manila at a premium price.
From 17 hectares of organic rice farm in 2015, the cooperative now has 35 hectares of organic farms which are being cultivated by 65 agrarian reform beneficiaries’ members. The award and recognition received from the Department of Agriculture will inspire more agrarian reform beneficiaries to adopt organic rice farming.