Rice farmers to receive cash aid from DA-Bicol

NAGA CITY (Bicol Standard)— Regional Executive Director Rodel Tornilla of the Department of Agriculture in Bicol confirmed that the agency will give financial assistance to farmers affected by the plummet of the price of palay.

In an interview with the Bicol Standard, Tornilla said they are now preparing the guidelines for the distribution.

Not all farmers are qualified

The Regional Executive Director clarified that the assistance will only be extended to farmers who are tilling lots measuring one hectare or less.

The list of farmers will be based on the Registry System for Basic Services prepared by the Office of the Municipal Agriculturist in the different towns.

“Said list is currently being updated to ensure that only qualified farmers will receive the aid,” he explained.

The cash assistance will benefit some 600,000 small farmers, or around 20% of farmers in the entire nation, he said.

African Swine Fever

Meantime, Tornilla also took the opportunity to explain that while they are busy with the cash assistance program, the monitoring of African Swine Fever remains a top priority for the Regional Office.

“As of now, there is still no hog in the region which has been confirmed to have the dreaded disease,” he said.

“Still, we urge hog raisers to be meticulous, especially as ASF continues to be recorded in other provinces. If they observe signs of the disease, this should be reported immediately to the nearest Municipal Agriculturist,” he concluded.