CITY OF SAN FERNANDO – The province of Pampanga has achieved self-sufficiency in 2016 producing a total of 421,647 metric tons of rice enough to feed 2,198,000 individuals, according to the Office of the Provincial Agriculture (OPA).
Ed Salonga, officer-in-charge of OPA noted that Pampanga has 116, 494.70 hectares of land divided for planting of rice (61, 987 hectares), corn (16, 987), sugar cane (6,500), lowland vegetables (3,500) and the remaining for orchard such as mango, calamansi, chico, coconut and dragon fruit.
Salenga said Pampanga also promoted the benefit of hybrid rice and high yielding inbred varieties such as the use of Green Super Rice ( GSR) with the advocacy on organic agriculture allowing farmers to involve in various activities such as crop protection and pest brigade.
He said that Pambat Irrigation Management Office (Pambat IMO) in Solib, Floridablanca, Upper Pampanga Integrated Irrigation System (PPRIIS), Communal Irrigation System (CIS) along Pampanga River and Angat Maasim River Irrigation System (AMRIS) in San Rafael, Bulacan are the four major irrigation system of the province operated by National Irrigation Administration (NIA) and private irrigation pumps.
He added farm laborers are currently introducing farm mechanization on transplanter, drum seeders and combine harvester to the different areas of the province.
He said Pampanga is among the top 12 provinces nominated for National Rice Achiever Awards.
Rice self-sufficiency plays a major role in the country to mitigate the effects of climate change according to Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol.v –Ma. Reina Len Luna/PIO