PhilSCAT ‘Makina Teknik’ rolls out in Mindanao

The Philippine-Sino Center for Agricultural Technology (PhilSCAT) in partnership with Agricultural Training Institute- Regional Training Center 13 (ATI-RTC 13) trained Caraganon farmers on Rice Machinery Operations: Focus on Mechanical Rice Transplanter and Double-Mulching Technique under Makina Teknik Program or “Mekanikal na Teknik sa Pagtatanim ng Palay”, conducted on October 16-19, 2018 (first batch) and October 23-26, 2018 (second batch) held at Los Angeles, Butuan City.

A total of 56 farmers; 5 female and 51 male recipients and would-be recipients of mechanical rice transplanter from Agusan Del Sur, Agusan Del Norte, Surigao Del Sur, Surigao Del Norte and Dinagat Island graduated on the said training.

The highlight of the four-day intensive training were focused on the proper operation, maintenance and troubleshooting of Mechanical Rice Transplanter (MRT) and proper seedling preparation using Double-Mulching Technique (DMT).

DMT is an alternative method of seedling preparation which can intensify the adoption of the mechanical rice transplanting technology because it uses low cost materials available in the market.

The imperative objective of the training is to support the sustainability of present farm mechanization program of the Department of Agriculture, ensure better opportunity for people that may be displaced by mechanization and boost farmers production, yield and income.

Makina teknik also envisioned to enable full utilization of mechanical rice tranplanter towards increased rice productivity and solved the underutilization of transplanter distributed in the cooperatives by the Department of Agriculture-Regional Field Offices.

Samuel Calonzo, OIC-Center Director of ATI-RTC 13 said, “Actually, this training is not part of ATI coverage, however this is timely in the present farm mechanization program of the government that’s why this intervention was approved.”

The training course module was developed by the Center’s experts with 30% lecture and 70% hands-on activities.

“Malaking tulong itong training sa amin para magamit na namin ang aming mga mechanical rice transplanter. Ang ganda ng training concept at ang saya maghands-on,” said Ritchie A. Nemeno, the most active participant of the first batch.

Moreover, Edmar C. Silagan declared as the most improved participant of the first batch while Roxanne Faith Z. Indedano as most improved trainee having the highest knowledge gained increment based on the pre and post-test and Nestor B. Dapar as most active participant of the second batch.

Crop care and management was also discussed by the Chief of Technology Products and Development Division (TPDD) of PhilSCAT, Carlos C. Abon, Jr, PhD. from sowing to harvesting activities to boost farmers’ yield and income with less production cost.

Furthermore, farmer champ and a millionaire from Isabela, Engr. Romeo Vasquez inspired Caraganon farmers thru his humble beginning story in adapting farm mechanization program of the government and interventions to further boost his income.

Emmanuel V. Sicat, PhD, Director of PhilSCAT, Abon, Calonzo, and Engr. Matt Andrew Baquiano, training specialist of ATI-RTC 13 graced the graduation ceremonies.

“Maraming salamat sa ATI-RTC 13, sa pagtitiwala upang kami ay magbigay ng pagsasanay sa mga farmers ng CARAGA na nakatuon sa tamang paggamit ng makinaryang pangtanim katuwang ang tamang pag-aalaga ng punla,” said Sicat in his message.

Calonzo is still open and hopeful for another partnership with other PhilSCAT training interventions to help Northeastern section of the Island of Mindanao. #RRCarbonel

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