The Department of Agriculture in Northern Mindanao (DA-10) recognized Thursday farmer-organizations in the region that showed best practices in communal gardening.
During a virtual ceremony, DA-10 Executive Director Carlene C. Collado led the awarding to the Pan-ay IPM Kasakalikasan Farmers Association, Inc. from Clarin, Misamis Occidental.
The organization bested five other finalists based on the DA-10 assessment in March this year.
Other finalists included the Tangaro Young Farmers of Catarman, Camiguin; Barangay Calaocalao in Don Carlos, Bukidnon; Sinai Rural Improvement Club Multi-Purpose Cooperative of Laguindingan, Misamis Oriental; and Barangay Libertad in Kauswagan, Lanao del Norte.
“The aim of this (communal gardening) is to support DA’s Plant, Plant, Plant program, which was a priority program implemented during the hardest time of the pandemic,” DA-10 Technical Director for Operations Carlota Madriaga said.
Part of the criteria in the search include how most crops are grown organically and supported by diversified farming systems.
Collado also said the gardens the finalists have established should not stop after the competition because the DA is set to provide free-range chicken for them to upgrade their facility.
Launched in November 2021, the search for the best communal garden aims to ensure food security and sufficiency at the community levels. (PNA)