BUTUAN CITY - After noting the improvement of the quality of life of a considerable number of families in some parts of Northeastern Mindanao or the Caraga Region, and some parts of Bukidnon, the Philippine Agrarian Reform Foundation, Inc. (FARFUND) is targeting to introduce a beneficial farming system to cultivators of some 5,000 hectares in the various parts of Mindanao this year.
According to PARFUND officials, they are now targeting at least 3,000 hectares in the Caraga Region alone as more rice farmers saw the success of the Rice-Duck Farming Integrated System Technology (RDFIST) in other parts of Mindanao.
Also in the pipeline is the RDFIST convergence of PARFUND with the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) in the Caraga Region and Zamboanga del Sur.
This development prompted the management of PARFUND, led by its chief operating officer Apolo Pacamalan, to mobilize its technical personnel to assist the interested rice farmers.
The PARFUND is also targeting an additional 500-hectare area in Bukidnon, 500 hectares in Misamis Oriental.
Due to its demand at the breeder farm in Barangay Kinamlutan here, the PARFUND is also expected to establish another mother duck breeding farm in Trento, Agusan del Sur.
In an interview, PARFUND regional coordinator Mary Jane Pansacala said the program is being widened because of the funding partners, and one of these is the international agri-health non-government organization - the German Doctors - with their integrated rice-duck farming system, a technology that control schistosomiasis, which is existing in the 8 villages of Trento in Agusan del Sur, and Bukidnon.
Other funding and environment-friendly partners include the Peace and Equity Foundation, CORAID Climate Change, and the Inter-Church Organization for Development Cooperation of The Netherlands.
At present, the RDFIST is already being utilized in the areas of Trento, Bunawan, Esperanza, and Bayugan City, all of Agusan del Sur; Remedios Trinidad Romualdez in Agusan del Norte; Alegria, Tubod, Gigaquit, Bacuag, and Placer, all in Surigao del Norte; and Mabuhay in Bukidnon.
The PARFUND also recently launched the RDFIST in Barangay Dakutan, Esperanza, Agusan del Sur, where at least 43 hectares, with 43 farmers, are already manning their respective rice-duck farming system their area.