MANILA, Philippines The Department of Agriculture is allocating P760 million to improve Western Visayas rice industry.
The amount represents 13 percent of the Rice Competitive Enhancement Fund being implemented in the top 57 rice-producing provinces nationwide.
Region 6 is composed of Aklan, Antique, Capiz, Guimaras, Iloilo and Negros Occidental.
With the RCEF, the region is projecting an increase of at least one metric ton per hectare in palay production in the region following the distribution of inbred seeds.
Starting October last year, the Philippine Rice Research Institute had distributed only16 percent of the total 286,522 bags of certified inbred seeds allocated for Western Visayas.
Some of the certified seeds distributed were sourced out from Mindoro, which caused the delay of the distribution.
For the wet cropping season, PhilRice is set to distribute 359,756 bags of certified seeds to 179,879 rice farmers in the region.
Meanwhile, they will start in October the distribution of another 240,356 bags for the dry season of 2021.
The Philippine Center for Postharvest Development and Mechanization will also turn over this month P623 million worth of farm machinery and equipment to 127 farmers cooperatives and associations.
Individual farmers could also borrow low-interest capital loans under RCEF through the Land Bank of the Philippines and Development Bank of the Philippines.