As part of Department of Agriculture (DA) Secretary Proceso J. Alcala’s thrust to promote organic farming, a Mindanao-wide Vermi Forum will be held on August 17-18, 2010 at Philtown Hotel, Velez St., Cagayan de Oro City.

It aims to institutionalize the organic sector industry in the Department of Agriculture pursuant to the provisions of Executive Order (EO) 481 now a Republic Act (RA) 10068 “An Act Providing for the Development and Promotion of Organic Agriculture in the Philippines and other Purposes”.

Organic farming products and technologies will also be exhibited at the Provincial Capitol Grounds on August 16-20, 2010 in tandem with the Salo Tabo activity.

The objectives on which the forum will focus are in coming-up with Vermi Organic Network in Mindanao, and to provide venue in discussing further RA 10068. It also aims to update in the facilitation of vermi-related organic investment (products & marketing) and other organic farming technologies, and to unify efforts in partnership with National Government Agencies, Local Government Units, Agriculture and Fishery Councils, corporate institutions, Non-Government Organizations, Farmers’ Cooperatives, private individual enthusiasts and organic advocates. All these efforts will address toward the efficient implementation of RA 10068.

The event is private led initiated by the Regional Agriculture and Fishery Council 10 (RAFC 10) with Xavier University College of Agriculture Academe and supported by Department of Agriculture – Regional Field Unit 10 (DA-RFU 10) and other government agencies like Bureau of Soils and Water Management (BSWM), National Agriculture and Fishery Council, Department of Agrarian Reform, Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), Department of Science and Technology (DOST), Department of Tourism (DOT), Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG), and the Provincial Local Government of Misamis Oriental. Expected participants are about 300 multi-stakeholders coming from 6 regions involved/engaged in agriculture and fishery sectors.

Still on organic farming campaign, DA Sec. Alcala recently attended the Mindanao Regional Farmers’ Conference held in Malaybalay, Bukidnon. He emphasized that partnership with DA and other various organizations is very vital in the successful implementation of RA 10068 and that it ensures progress of the country’s agriculture industry. “Widespread practice of organic farming in the Philippines is the key in attaining sustainable agriculture in the country”, he said.

Sec. Alcala, a known organic advocate, also said that “with organic farming, my grandchildren as well as yours will have a vivid future, safe food, and clean environment.” He calls for a strong and unified effort in the thrust of organic agriculture.(MannyKerwinV.Martinez, DA-RFU RAFID10)

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